Basic Pesto Recipe

To me, pesto is just a word for some green leaves, some ground up with some nuts or seeds, salt, oil and maybe some cheese or lemon or lime juice. It tastes great with all sorts of variations. Use the general proportions below and see what suits your fancy.  Or use whatever you need to use up from your share. I frequently throw in a mix of greens - a handful of basil, arugula and parsley, for example. You can use nuts or seeds or cheese, or not. As a general rule, green things in the brassica family, like cabbage and broccoli, get a bit on the smelly side when ground up. I usually steer clear of them for this use.


2 cups green leaves (basil, cilantro, arugula, wild picked amaranth, dill, mustard greens.......)

2 - 6 tablespoons nuts or seeds (walnuts, pine nuts, almonds, cashews, sunflower seeds.......)

2 large cloves garlic or 1 garlic scape

½ cup extra-virgin olive oil

½ cup freshly grated parmesan or romano cheese


Place nuts or seeds, cheese and garlic or scape in food processor. Pulse to chop finely. Add greens and oil. Pulse until smooth. Add a dash of lemon or lime juice to brighten the flavor, if desired, or pour it on top of packed pesto to maintain bright green color.