Growing up we traveled to Italy a lot. It was a place my parents traveled on business and it was just generally a country they loved – mainly for the food. So I’ve got a lot of fond memories of trips there, but it was on a trip without me that my parents discovered what we all generally consider the best pesto ever in a little town called Porto Venere. When I was finally able to get back to this town, with my dad and best friend, a few years later we did, in fact, find this famous pesto store, even going so far as to have a silly picture taken behind the counter with the owners. And also, in town there’s a vending machine full of their pesto, it’s that good.
Ever since then my dad has become a pesto maker, usually whipping up a weekly batch to toss with some rigatoni for my nephew and niece on their regular Friday night with the grandparents. It is literally the only green thing they eat.
All of this is to say, I feel like I’ve posted pesto recipes about 10 times (here, here, here) but this time I took it back to the classic. Well, almost.
What I Used:
- Half a bunch of chopped kale
- A large handful of fresh basil
- 3/4 cup olive oil
- 1 lemon worth of juice
- 1/4 cup of freshly grated parmesan
- 1/4 cup of lightly toasted pine nuts
- 1 big pinch of salt
- In a dry pan, lightly toast the pine nuts over medium heat for just a few moments to allow the flavor & oil to develop.
- Add all of the ingredients (only half of the oil) to the blender and begin to blend. Add oil as necessary for the consistency you want.
For this particular dinner, I decided to use my pesto as a topper for my first Cali Flour Pizza! Two girlfriends gave me a bunch of these frozen cauliflower pizzas as part of my bday gift this year and I’m pleased to say it was delish! Very different from the Trader Joe’s version here, but super flavorful. It was thin and all it needed was the pesto sauce and a few slices of tomato to be super full of flavor. I served it up alongside turkey sausage for a complete meal!
Current Food Pics Below…. Photos from my trip to Porto Venere TEN YEARS AGO below!!!
And now for the throwback pics….