The Brave Cook

My life from the heart of Berlin!

Archive for the tag “goat cheese”

Save the basil!

I love to keep a basil plant at the kitchen window but due to the unsteady temperature conditions it is not so easy to keep it alive for long as well as it is not so easy to use it up fast enough. The best thing to do in that case is to make a basil pesto! I have never done a pesto before but my blog is basically all about trying new recipes and learning new things.

There are basil pesto recipes for a classic basil pesto but actually pesto is always made to taste, based on the ingredients at hand. That really comes up to my own philosophy about using for a recipe what I find in my kitchen. Most basil pesto recipes include pine nuts/walnuts and parmesan cheese. I did not have these ingredients at hand so I left out the nuts and used a creamy feta cheese. Of course, you can adjust the ingredients to your taste!Basil Pesto with goat cheese

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 – 2 cups fresh basil leaves
  • 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 cup freshly grated parmesan or goat cheese
  • 3 garlic cloves
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 tbsp peppercorns or freshly ground pepper
  • 1 tsp lemon juice

Instructions

Wash the basil and remove the leaves from the stems. Combine the basil leaves, garlic cloves, goat cheese and the peppercorns in a food processor. Pulse until everything is perfectly blended together. Add the olive oil in a constant stream while the food processor is on. Scrape down the sides of the food processor a few times with a spatula.

Since I do not use any nuts for my pesto I try to give it a special flavor with the type of salt and pepper that I’m using. My peppercorns have different colors and are freshly cracked in the food processor. If you do not have a food processor or you prefer to use a mortar you need to be very accurate when grinding the peppercorns. I like to use a mortar and to work with my hands instead of letting the food processor do all the work.The salt that I’m using is a special himalaya salt with a light pink color. It has a very strong and aromatic flavor.Add 1 tsp lemon juice and 1 tsp lemon zest. This will give the pesto a fruity taste and balance the garlic.Your pesto is ready to be served! Serve with pasta, baked potatoes or even with fried fish.This is a very simple recipe and you can even safe your pesto in the fridge for several days to use it for many dishes. Pour a thin layer of olive oil over the top of it like I did so that it does not turn brown!

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