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Make your own Pesto, Basil Pesto alla Genovese, Recipe with Step by Step Photos and Chef´s Tips

By 29. January 2017 March 18th, 2019 No Comments
Pesto made in a glass and photographed from above.

OTHER LANGUAGES: deGerman

In this post I will show you my chef Basil Pesto alla genovese recipe. Making your own basil pesto step by step is very easy.  

 Pesto alla Genovese – the pesto may also be called “the pesto” and the word comes from the Italian “pestare”, meaning “crush”.

The pesto is an uncooked herb sauce and comes from Italian or Roman cuisine.

Pesto was first mentioned and documented in the Ligurian region around 1863. The cold basil sauce tastes delicious with a wide variety of dishes.

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1. Which ingredients belong in the Original Pesto alla Genovese?

The original pesto consists of basil, parmesan, garlic, roasted pine nuts, olive oil, salt, pepper.

The pesto was traditionally prepared in a mortar.

basil bunch

Fresh basil is needed for a homemade pesto. During the bear’s (wild) garlic season, the preparation of wild garlic pesto is recommended.

1.1 Basil Pesto shopping List for the Supermarket

For a good basil pesto you need the following ingredients…

  • Basil fresh
  • pine nuts
  • some garlic
  • salt, pepper
  • Parmesan or Pecorino
  • olive oil

The exact quantities for the ingredients can be found below in the recipe for pesto. I like to exchange the pine nuts for roasted almonds. This tastes just as good and is another pesto variant. Also try walnuts or cashew kernels. You can be creative here…

If you want to wash the basil, please spin dry before preparing the pesto!

Add garlic to the pesto and the pesto will be delicious!

Add the sliced garlic to the pesto.

3. Make your own Basil Pesto, which Variants are there?

You can prepare your pesto in four different ways:

3.1 Preparing Pesto with a Hand Blender

I like to use my hand blender for pesto preparation. The preparation is child’s play.

Important: Grate the cheese finely beforehand with a cheese grater. Cheese pieces that are too large cannot be easily mixed into oil.

Once the cheese is grated, you can put all the ingredients in a blender jug and mix quickly with a hand blender.

3.2 Preparing Pesto in the Multi-Crusher (Cutter)

Start here with the cheese: Cut the cheese pieces into small pieces and place them in the multi-crusher. Then chop finely. Then add the remaining ingredients and crush the cheese and prepare to the pesto. Your homemade pesto is ready in 5 minutes!

3.3 Preparing the Pesto in a Mortar

You’ll need a big kitchen mortar for that. Start with the garlic, then add the finely chopped basil and the remaining ingredients and grate, crush the ingredients evenly.

For this variant you need some strength, endurance and patience 🙂

3.4 Preparing Pesto alla Genovese in Thermomix

The Thermomix is excellent for the preparation of Pesto alla Genovese. From my experience, however, only for large quantities. Experience shows that it takes a little longer to decant from the mixing bowl.

Here are the instructions for preparing pesto in the Wunderkessel…

  • Pour 100 g broken Parmesan into the clean and dry mixing bowl, crush 13 sec./step 10 (grate finely).
  • Transfer the grated Parmesan into a bowl.
  • Add a piece of garlic clove, 2-3 bunches of plucked basil leaves, 50-100 g roasted pine nuts, 1 teaspoon salt and 250 ml olive oil to the mixing bowl.
  • Cut into small pieces at 18 sec./stage 6.5.
  • Add the previously grated Parmesan cheese and mix for 10 sec/level 4.5.

One more hint:
The Thermomix cookbook indicates a shelf life of up to one month, which I consider to be too long. But a week is certainly not a problem.

Please only remove the pesto with a clean spoon and cover with oil before closing.

With the hand blender the basil pesto preparation goes fast. crush all ingredients in the mixing bowl. © Thomas Sixt Food Photographer

Crush the pesto ingredients with a hand blender.

Here is another seasonal cooking tip: In spring you can also prepare wild garlic pesto instead of basil pesto.

4. Preserving Basil Pesto…

The secret of the preservation of pesto: Wrap the filled pesto in the glass with aluminium foil…so you can minimize harmful light influences. The pesto remains usable for a long time and its colour is appetisingly light green!

Please only remove the pesto with a clean spoon. I cover the pesto additionally in the glass with a cling film.

Place a piece of cling film, cut to fit, directly on the oil. To remove the pesto, simply put the foil aside and renew.

Your pesto tastes so delicious that it won’t stand in the fridge for two days!

Pesto glass wrapped in aluminium foil, make pesto durable.

How to preserve basil pesto: Close the pesto glass and wrap the glass in aluminium foil.

5. What goes with Pesto?

The classic to Basil pesto is certainly pasta. This preparation is most delicious with Linguine, a slightly wider or flat spaghetti type or with Trofie. Trofie are short, pointed, twisted noodles made of durum wheat semolina.

My recipe for spaghetti pesto genovese shows you how to prepare it step by step.

Pesto with Basil goes perfectly with…

  • Roasts like beef roast, turkey roast, herb pork roast
  • Poultry such as duck and goose, roast chicken and quail make pesto an excellent addition.
  • Simply serve starters and salads separately or decorate on the plate.
  • To soups such as potato soup and vegetable soup and in stews of any kind.
  • To poached or fried fish and seafood.
Noodles with pesto, beans, potatoes and tomatoes

Noodles with pesto alla genovese, spaghetti with basil sauce, alla pesto genovese original, with potatoes, beans and tomatoes. © Thomas Sixt Foodfotograf

6. Recipe Pesto, my Basil Pesto

Below you will find the recipe for pesto with step by step photos as instructions. The consistency of my pesto is rather liquid. If you want your pesto to be firmer, please use more basil and pine nuts or reduce the amount of oil. I wish you good luck!

Pesto made in a glass and photographed from above.
Pesto alla genovese, cold Basil Sauce Recipe
Votes: 17
Rating: 5
You:
Rate this recipe!
Rezept drucken
Original Pesto alla Genovese recipe by Thomas Sixt. Prepare your own basil pesto step by step.
Servings Prep Time
6 Portions 5 Minutes
Cook Time
5 Minutes
Servings Prep Time
6 Portions 5 Minutes
Cook Time
5 Minutes
Pesto made in a glass and photographed from above.
Pesto alla genovese, cold Basil Sauce Recipe
Votes: 17
Rating: 5
You:
Rate this recipe!
Rezept drucken
Original Pesto alla Genovese recipe by Thomas Sixt. Prepare your own basil pesto step by step.
Servings Prep Time
6 Portions 5 Minutes
Cook Time
5 Minutes
Servings Prep Time
6 Portions 5 Minutes
Cook Time
5 Minutes
Ingredients
  • 60 g parmesan or pecorino finely ground
  • 2 bunches basil
  • 1-2 tbs pine nuts roasted, cooled down
  • 1/2 piece garlic clove or even less
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 4 pinches pepper black, white or dried green
  • 125 ml oliv oil
Servings: Portions
Units:
Instructions
  1. Make all ingredients ready. Finely grate Parmesan cheese or Pecorino with the cheese grater. The pine nuts absolutely roast, only in such a way the typical Pesto taste comes off!
    Basil pesto ingredients. Prepare pesto step by step.
  2. Place basil, grated cheese, pine nuts, salt and pepper in the mixing bowl.
    Ingredients for basil Pesto alla genovese © Thomas Sixt Foodfotograf
  3. I always add some garlic to the homemade basil pesto.
    Add garlic to the pesto and the pesto will be delicious!
  4. Pour the olive oil into the blender jug.
    Add olive oil to the basil pesto ingredients.
  5. Crush the prepared ingredients in a mixing bowl with a hand blender. Season the Basilikumpesto Final.
    With the hand blender the basil pesto preparation goes fast. crush all ingredients in the mixing bowl. © Thomas Sixt Food Photographer
  6. Pour the pesto into a screw glass or into bowls for serving.
    Pesto selber gemacht im Glas von oben fotografiert.
  7. Freshly prepared pesto stays green and attractive longer if you wrap aluminium foil around the glass.
    Pesto glass wrapped in aluminium foil, make pesto durable.
  8. Enjoy homemade pesto with bread on a plate...Pesto goes well with snacks, as a sauce with starters, salads, soups, roasts, fish and pasta. Good luck and a good appetite!
    Pesto on a plate with bread serving example.
Recipe Notes

8. Calories (kcal) Basil Pesto, the Nutritional Values for Pesto alla Genovese

Nutrition Facts
Pesto alla genovese, cold Basil Sauce Recipe
Amount Per Serving
Calories 244 Calories from Fat 225
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 25g 38%
Saturated Fat 5g 25%
Polyunsaturated Fat 3g
Monounsaturated Fat 17g
Cholesterol 7mg 2%
Sodium 364mg 15%
Potassium 40mg 1%
Total Carbohydrates 1g 0%
Dietary Fiber 0.2g 1%
Sugars 0.1g
Protein 4g 8%
Vitamin A 4%
Vitamin C 1%
Calcium 13%
Iron 2%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

This pesto recipe in german version: Pesto selber machen, Basilikumpesto zubereiten

 

OTHER LANGUAGES: deGerman

Thomas Sixt

Thomas Sixt

Servus!Ich bin Thomas und zeige Dir auf dieser Website tolle Kochrezepte zum selber kochen.Als Kochprofi begleite ich Dich gerne in der Küche und als Foodfotograf möchte ich Dir Lust auf gutes Essen machen.Gutes Gelingen & Guten Appetit!

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