Nothing says “garden-fresh” like homemade pesto — and nothing could be easier, either. The ingredients are few, inexpensive (since basil thrives in pots or beds) and simple, like all the best Italian cuisine.
The bright green flavourful paste is believed to have originated in the coastal Liguria region of northern Italy and its name means “to pound” or “to crush,” referring to the traditional preparation with a mortar and pestle.
Today, making pesto is as easy as tossing the best quality ingredients you can find into a blender and letting it do all the work. Once finished, it enhances almost any dish from pasta and gnocchi to pizza and bruschetta. It can also be drizzled into soups or tossed with potatoes, with zesty, delicious results every time.
And though we love the instant gratification of this year-round staple, there are a few key tricks to make restaurant-quality pesto, as explained here by Antonio Minichiello, Chef at Veranda — the contemporary Italian restaurant at Four Seasons Hotel Las Vegas.