Dust off your food processor or take out the dear old mortar and pestle because it’s pesto-o-clock. A pesto brightens up any boring pasta recipe, converting naked noodles in a stupid sauce, to a flavor-packed silly basil-rific tomato-y concoction.
To make the pesto: Combine the basil and spinach with the nuts, pulse a few times in a food processor. Add the garlic, pulse a few times more. Slowly add olive oil so it streams into the basil, while the processor is still on. The green will probably be all splattered around the processor like Kermit on a bad trip, so turn off periodically to scrape the sides with a spatula. Add salt, pepper, lemon zest and grated cheese. Processor it until everything is blended.
- 3 cups fresh basil leaves, packed
- 1 cup baby spinach (optional)
- 1/3 cup freshly grated Parmesan (or Romano cheese)
- 1/3 cup good olive oil
- 1/4 cup pine nuts (I used almonds, you could also use walnuts)
- 1/2 teaspoons of lemon zest
- 2 large garlic cloves, minced
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste