Pesto Recipes

Pesto Recipes

Pesto is a traditional sauce originating in the Liguria region of northern Italy, traditionally consisting of fresh basil leaves, pine nuts, garlic, extra-virgin olive oil and Parmesan cheese. The name 'pesto' derives from the Italian word 'pestare', which means to 'pound' or to 'crush'. Pesto was traditionally made in a pestle and mortar, but nowadays it is often made in a food processor. Although this is the traditional pesto, many other sauces exist that are made in a similar way with similar ingredients.

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About Pesto:

Because pesto has now become a generic term for any sauce made with herbs and nuts, the original pesto is now known in Italy as pesto alla Genovese, as this is the region in Liguria that pesto actually comes from. Pistou is a similar sauce to pesto, and this is a regional sauce made in Provence, usually from herbs, garlic and olive oil only; cheese and nuts are not usually added.

Green pestos are the most traditional type, but red pestos are equally as delicious — they simply include tomatoes, usually sun-dried or sun-blushed as well as the usual herbs, nuts, cheese and olive oil. However, peppers can also be used, as can charred sweet chillies. Black olives are also sometimes used, as is rocket and lemon juice.

We've got plenty of pesto recipes above, from the traditional basil pesto to the more modern olive pesto. There are also a couple of sweet pesto recipes to mix things up a bit. NOTE: although all recipes state that a food processor should be used, you could always use a pestle and mortar to make your pesto or if your knife skills are particularly good you can chop all of the ingredients very finely before mixing with the olive oil.


PestoRecipes.co.uk uses measurements and ingredients for the United Kingdom. If you are located elsewhere in the world, you may find PestoRecipes.org makes more sense to you!

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