Usually made with basil leaves and pine nuts, pesto is a simple but delicious combination of flavourful leaves, oily nuts, hard cheese, olive oil, garlic, salt and lemon juice; any ingredients meeting this description can produce a really versatile, delicious pesto.
Basil, known as the king of herbs can easily be grown in a pot. Basil grows quickly in hot weather. If planted in a large pot, with afternoon shade and watered when the leaves begin to droop it should grow well.
The oily nuts in pesto would normally be pine nuts but we have some almonds growing in our Spanish garden. Almonds have a thick leathery hull, inside this is a hard woody shell, then finally, the yummy edible seed. The hard woody shell can be a really hard one to crack (see the broken nutcrackers pic ooops). However they are no match for a lump hammer.
To make Almond pesto;
3 cups of fresh basil leaves
½ cup almonds
½ cup grated parmesan/ hard cheese
1 garlic clove (2 if you love garlic)
Squeeze of lemon
Sprinkle of salt and ground black pepper
Approx ½ cup of olive oil (to your desired consistency)
Keep the olive oil to one side, place all the ingredients into a food processor, pulse the ingredients whilst slowly adding olive oil until the pesto is oozing. Taste and add more salt, pepper or lemon if required. Spoon into a jar and store in the fridge, Yay!