1 cup. olive oil - virgin, first pressed. (Do not use “light” olive oil, as it is not “lighter” in calories as many people think, but is only “lighter” in taste, and the quality is generally not as good.
After filling containers, cover surface of pesto with olive oil to maintain color and create a good seal. If freezing, put pesto into small containers such as the 8 oz. Tofutti Cream Cheese containers, or hummus containers. This pesto freezes beautifully, and is a delight of springtime to all your senses in the middle of a cold winter! May also use as a bread spread, in other recipes, etc.
Our favorite way to use this Basil Pesto is as follow:
1 lb. Cremini Mushrooms, cleaned and sliced
1 lb. Penne pasta
1 container Basil Pesto (see above)
Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add a bit of salt, and then add the pasta.
Using a large pan, sauté mushrooms in a little of the pesto, adding a bit of olive oil as needed. As mushrooms become almost done, turn heat to very low and move mushrooms to sides of pan. Pour the pesto into the middle of the pan.
Drain the pasta (reserving a cup or so of the pasta water), and then pour pasta into the pan with the mushrooms and pesto. Mix everything to combine. Add a bit of the pasta water if needed to obtain the desired consistency. We add additional nutritional yeast to the entire mixture as well. Serve and enjoy the delight of summertime basil!
Do you have leftovers for the next day? Of course they can be reheated! Another possibility is to arrange a bed of mixed garden salad greens, and place cold Basil Pesto Pasta on top of the salad – a lovely lunch or light dinner option!