After seeing Karen from South of Rome's post about growing basil, I felt inspired to share with you the results of our first pesto using not only home grown basil, but also home scavenged pine nuts. The whole family partook in this one. Smashing open the pine nut shells might have been my toddler's favorite part, although he also had fun trying on the gloves I wore to protect my hands from becoming a sticky mess from the pine resin that oozes out of our pine cones. And once he got bored with that, he discovered the pile of freshly opened pine nuts and started eating them about as fast as we could open them! Thank goodness that only about 1/2 cup are necessary.
I didn't use one recipe, but glanced at both Italian and English language versions on the internet. Then the Italian husband who is very-good-in-the-kitchen took over with the quantities and blending, saying it was more about a little of this a little of that, until you got the proportions right according to your taste buds, than following a recipe. I didn't argue, but somehow ended up the official taster. And after a few tastes, not only did we find our perfect blend of fresh basil, pine nuts, garlic, olive oil, parmigiano and pecorino romano, but we also found the perfect way to eat it: on top of Ligurian testaroli (pancakes), a simple mix of two types of flour and water cooked on the grill just like any old pancake. So simple, so fun to eat. You have to try this!