Pesto alla genovese: how to make it

In order to make Italian Pesto take one clove of garlic some basil leaves Parmigiano cheese and crush them together them with pine nuts using a mortar. Make sure to include some olive oil to reduce this mixture to a paste like substance. Although it has been said that Pesto was likely originated from India, the basil plant took its firmest root in the regions of Liguria, Italy. It is in abundance throughout this part of Italy. This recipe for pesto alla genovese which is the most commonly known pesto has been often revised and it has become a staple in the Ligurian culinary traditions. In Liguria each family most oftenly has a featuring of their own version of the traditional pesto recipe (with slight differences to the traditional ingredients). This is the only reason why pesto recipes can often differ from each other.

There is a sauce similiar to pesto from Italy that is made in French Provence, although it has many of the same similiarites it does not include pine nuts and it is called pistou.
Traditionally prepared Pesto is made using a marble mortar with a wooden pestle. First, one must place the garlic and pine nuts together in the mortar and reduced them to a cream. From there the basil leaves are added into the mixture with a tad coarse salt and ground up into a creamy consistency. Only after all this is done then a mix of Parmigiano-Reggiano and Pecorino are added. To help combine the whole mixture a little extra-virgin olive oil is added. In order to store the pesto for long periods of time it is best when stored in a tight jar covered by a extra layer of extra-virgin olive oil, pesto can last in the refrigerator up to a week, and can be frozen for later use.

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