Pesto is a delicious and flavorful sauce, and we will thoroughly discuss it in this article.
We will go through several aspects of Pesto, such as what does it taste like? How can you cook it? What are its health benefits? Etc.
We will also address some important queries related to Pesto.
What Is Pesto?
Pesto, also known as Pesto Alla Genovese, is a sauce that originated in the Genoa region, which is the capital of Liguria, Italy.
Traditional Pesto consisted of hard cheese, crushed garlic, European pine nuts, basil leaves, and coarse salt.
All the ingredients were blended with olive oil to make the sauce.
What Does Pesto Taste Like?
Pesto is a blend of different flavors derived from ingredients such as fresh basil, cheese, and garlic.
Pesto has a mild herby flavor, with hints of lemon juice and garlic.
You can add some spices in Pesto to make it more flavorful such as salt, black peppercorn, or crushed red pepper.
The pine nuts (finely chopped) give the Pesto a creamy and smooth texture.
How Is Pesto Made?
Here is how Pesto is made:
- Basil Leaves: 60 to 65 Leaves (50 grams)
- Grana Padano or Parmigiano Reggiano: ½ Cup (70 grams)
- Extra Virgin Olive Oil: ½ Cup
- Pecorino Sardo: 2 tbsps. (30 grams)
- Garlic Cloves (peeled): 2
- Pine Nuts: 1 tbsp. (15 grams)
- Coarse salt: 4 to 5 grains
To make the Pesto greener than usual, take the bowl and blades of the food processor, and put them in the fridge for about 15 minutes or until they are cold.
Prepare the basil leaves by washing them in cold water, and place them in a large-sized bowl with ice.
With the kitchen towel, dry the basil leaves and put them in the food processor with grated Parmigiano, pine nuts, and garlic.
Chop all the ingredients coarsely for a few seconds, then add Pecorino Fiore Sardo cheese.
Blend the ingredients for about a minute, and then add extra virgin olive oil.
Blend for around 5 minutes until the Pesto sauce has a creamy texture.
However, you will need to work quickly because the Pesto cannot heat up.
Please use the food processor at minimum speed.
If you feel the Pesto is too thick, add a tablespoon or two of the cooking water, this will soften up the Pesto sauce.
How Do You Cook Pesto?
Here is how you can cook Pesto:
Pesto Pasta With Green Beans And Potatoes
- Kosher Salt
- Yukon Gold Potatoes (Peeled and cut into ¾-inch cubes): 5 Ounces
- Haricots Verts or Green Beans: 4 Ounces (110 grams)
- Pesto Sauce
- Extra Virgin Olive Oil: For Drizzle
- Grated Parmigiano Reggiano: Grated
Boil salted water green beans, potatoes, and pasta in a large pot.
Boil until the pasta is boiled and the green beans and potatoes are tender.
Reserve 1 cup of boiled water, drain the rest and transfer the green beans, pasta, and potato to a large serving or mixing bowl.
Add the Pesto sauce to the pasta and cooking water (1/4 Cup).
Toss well to emulsify pasta water and Pesto into a creamy sauce.
If needed, add more pasta water (1 tbsp. at a time) if you feel the pasta is dry.
Drizzle fresh extra virgin olive oil over the pasta and serve it with the Parmigiano Reggiano.
- Chopped Onions: 1 Cup
- Pesto: 2 ½ tbsps.
- Olive Oil: 2 tbsps.
- Package Pasta: 1 (16 ounces)
- Parmesan Cheese (Grated): 2 tbsp.
- Ground Black Pepper: To Taste
- Salt: To Taste
Take a large pot, and cook the pasta in it.
Cook the pasta until it is boiled.
Once the pasta is boiled, drain the water.
Heat olive oil in a frying pan over medium-low heat.
Add onions, pesto, pepper, and salt to the pan.
Cook until the onions are soft or for 5 minutes.
Mix pasta with the Pesto mixture in a large bowl and stir in the grated parmesan cheese.
What Do You Eat Pesto With?
While Pesto is typically eaten on its own, it is also a great salad dressing.
You can combine the Pesto sauce with other ingredients or flavors.
Pesto mixed with mayonnaise or olive oil is a perfect dressing for pasta, chicken, and tuna salads.
The Pesto sauce can also flavor mashed potatoes, risotto, or rice.
Check out 5 Best Stand Mixers Under $ 100.
Are you tired of mustard and mayonnaise? Then give Pesto sauce a try.
Spreading Pesto sauce on the bread will give the sandwich flavor and uplift.
Pesto sauce will go perfectly with a tomato mozzarella Panini, a chicken wrap, or a typical turkey sandwich.
Garnish And Sauce
Pesto is typically a pasta sauce but also goes well with vegetables, chicken, fish, and meat.
You can also spread the Pesto sauce on Balsamic chicken or grilled salmon.
You can also thin out the Pesto sauce with olive oil so that you can spoon the Pesto sauce on top of the chicken.
You can add the Pesto sauce to a grilled steak or vegetable kebabs.
Pesto sauce will also breathe life into grilled Chinese sea bass or baked Tofu.
Topping For Pizza
A Pesto pizza topping is refreshing from the traditional tomato sauce that typically goes with pizza.
The pesto sauce will be a great addition to the pizza, along with other delicious topping such as Kalamata olives, shrimp, grilled chicken, or artichoke hearts.
If you enjoy eggs with sauce for breakfast, you can pair Pesto sauce with the eggs.
Cooked eggs and Pesto sauce pair incredibly well, so you can go for the combination.
You can also use a fried, poached, or scrambled egg.
Is Pesto Good For You?
Pesto sauce offers several health benefits, and its aroma, color, and bright flavors have been used in cuisines worldwide for decades.
Pesto originated in Italy and is a massive part of the Mediterranean diet.
The eating pattern of the diet often includes nuts, olive oil, and fresh herbs, which are also ingredients of the Pesto sauce.
The Pesto sauce has lowered the risk of several chronic health conditions such as stroke, heart attack, and heart diseases.
The sauce can also lower the risk of diabetes and different cancers such as liver, pancreatic, breast, and stomach.
Studies have shown that ingredients of Pesto sauce can offer several health benefits.
Antioxidants, healthy fats, and other compounds in pine nuts and olive oil can prevent the production of compounds that promote inflammation in the body.
Eating these ingredients can lower cholesterol, blood sugar, and blood pressure levels.
Lab studies on olive oil also show that it can prevent certain tumors and prevent the growth of microbes and dangerous bacteria.
Test-tube and animal studies show that some garlic compounds can even kill or stop the growth of cancer-causing cells.
Lastly, fresh basil, which is also an ingredient of Pesto, offers many key health benefits.
For instance, animal and test-tube studies indicate that fresh basil leaves’ essential oils and antioxidants can stop foodborne pathogens’ growth and lower blood sugar levels.
Related Questions About Pesto?
Nutrients In Pesto Sauce?
Since Pesto is made from cheese, pine nuts, fresh basil, and olive oil, it offers a significant amount of calories and fat to your diet.
A 63-gram (1/4 Cup) serving of Pesto offers:
- Carbs: 6 grams
- Fat: 24 grams
- Protein: 6 grams
- Calories: 263
Is It Safe To Eat Pesto Daily?
Yes! If you consume Pesto sauce in moderation, you can eat it daily.
This article answers all your Pesto-related questions, such as what it tastes like, its health benefit, how you can cook it, etc.
This article will also inspire you to try Pesto or add your favorite recipes.
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