Hmm, what to do with lots of extra basil....
Uh, make pesto, of course! And then make some more (it actually freezes well, too!).
Pesto is great as a pasta sauce (leave about 1/2 c. cooking liquid in with the pasta before stirring it in), as a dipping sauce for veggies, to top chicken, or as a quick appetizer with some crackers. I like to use half basil, half spinach to tone down the basil flavor a little for the kiddos and also add some dark green leafy veggies (always a plus in my book). Here's how Mama makes it:
- 1 c. packed basil leaves
- 1 c. packed baby spinach
- 1/3 c. pine nuts
- 1/2 c. parmesan cheese, grated
- 3 garlic cloves
- 1/2 c. olive oil
- 1/2 t. salt (or to taste)
- 1/4 t. freshly ground black pepper
- pinch of paprika, optional
1. In a small pan, dry roast pine nuts over medium-high heat, stirring often until slightly browned, about 1-2 minutes.
3. Add grated parmesan and garlic cloves, pulse several more times and scrape sides.