I got to know Pesto just these past few years , before that i had no clue what pesto was. The name itself seemed a little strange , then when i found out , it’s green paste of something .. which wasn’t that much appetizing for me .. i didn’t bother to give it a try . Although i should have !! I always told my son , you have to try everything , you can decide whether you like it or not , later on , as long as you give it a shot . Well that didn’t apply to me with pesto .
Until 1 day i was at my friend’s house , our children was having a playdate , and since we’re guest , she’s making us lunch . That’s when i got to know pesto . I had no choice but to try it , and since then i’ve fallen in love with awesome yummy pesto .
What is pesto actually anyway ? Pesto is made from fresh basil leaves , with pine nuts , and garlic , and olive oil along with grated fresh parmesan cheese at the end . You could buy it at the store which i do during winter time because our basil plant wouldn’t survive midwest winter . But during summer months , oh , we’re having a blast with making pesto . Basil loves warm weather , they can’t stand cold , esp. frost , it will kill them . And i usually just make fresh pesto myself , basil leaves , the only down side about the cost of making your own pesto is the pine nuts , known as pignoli . They’re costly , but if you can find a place that can sell you in bulk i guess that would be a good way to do it .
Anyway .. here is a recipe for my pesto sandwich .
For Pesto :
2 cups of fresh basil leaves , make sure you pack this down , then washed and dried with paper towel .
1/4 cup of pine nuts
2 garlic cloves
1/2 tsp. of salt
2/3 cup of extra virgin olive oil ( good one )
1/2 cup of fresh parmesan cheese
In a food processor , mix basil leaves, pine nuts , and garlic, salt , pulse until the mixture become very pasty . While it’s still running , add the olive oil , keep pulsing til mixture becomes smooth . Then add parmesan cheese ( fresh and grated ) , mix well . If you intend to freeze this pesto , place the pesto mixture in the container , then add a layer of olive oil on top and cover tightly .
Now on the sandwiches
2 slices of bread of your choice , wheat , white , sourdough .. etc
few slices of turkey , salami , or ham
cheese , i use monterey jack cheese , but u can use provolone , muenster , etc
This is before being grilled :
Then just assemble , your sandwich , then spread pesto , add cheese on top , the meat , and more cheese and top with the other slice of bread . Place in a panini maker if you have it , if you don’t , skillet will work just fine . Melt a little butter , then place the sandwich on top for few minutes under low medium heat so it won’t burn your sandwich while melting the cheese , then turn it over , do the same . Once it’s done , cut 1 clove of garlic into half and then rub the garlic clove on the surface of the grilled sandwich , and it’s ready to serve !!