Thursday, July 7, 2011

In the Kitchen: Pesto Perfection

This post started out as an ambitious homemade pesto topping homemade pasta tutorial. Sadly though (especially for the Fonty diners), my homemade pasta turned out dense and disgusting. Once I have homemade perfected, I'll post that portion. But the pesto turned out perfectly, so here we go:

Homemade Pesto
4 cups packed basil leaves

1 cloves garlic (you can add more. I am not a raw garlic fan)
½ cup Butter cut in small cubes
2 cups Parmesan
1/2 cup Pine Nuts
Olive Oil

Soak the basil leaves in cold water. Dry very well (I like to use a salad spinner) and place in food processor. Top with butter, garlic, then Parmesan. Pulse until the mixture looks like little pebbles. Slowly add olive oil until the the pesto becomes a paste.  At this point, you can adjust the seasonings and add salt. Add the pine nuts and pulse again.
Put into jars. This pesto can be stored in the freezer for up to a year. Just be sure to get all the air out and top with extra olive oil to prevent oxidation.

Soaking Basil

You never have too much Parmesan

Oooh look at my lovely green color! I am so pretty.

Ready for gifting / freezing / scarfing immediately

Since I was trying to use up lots of basil, I incorporated basil into our protein for the evening. This fish is way too easy and very delicious. Pull out your frozen basil in the morning, and you have a great week night meal.

Panko Crusted Basil Halibut (serves 2)
2 Halibut fillets
1/2 cup pesto (this is a total guess. Just have enough to cover both sides of each fillet with pesto)
Panko Breads crumbs
Olive Oil

Preheat oven to 350
Smear the pesto on both sides of the fish. Cover entire fish generously in Panko Bread Crumbs. Drizzle with a tiny bit of olive oil.
Bake for 15-20 minutes until fish is cooked through and flaky.

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