Harvesting Fresh Basil

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After cleaning up in the garden, I was left with a huge bundle of Basil. As we draw closer to our first frost date of Oct 16, I didn’t want to take a chance. Mmm, I love pesto and the fresh smell of Basil. I stripped the leaves off and rinsed them quickly in cold water. Normally I wouldn’t wash Basil, since it strips it of it’s essential oils, but my Basil was covered with dirt. And from the looks of the water, I’m glad I did.

I don’t have a recipe that I follow for Pesto. I throw a little bit of this and a little bit of that in following the typical ingredients of Garlic, Parmesan Cheese, EVOO, and Pine Nuts. I buy raw Parmesan Cheese from Trader Joe’s and grind it in my food processor. I keep my pine nuts in the frig after I’ve soaked & dried them to break down the Phytic Acid that inhibit digestion. I always keep plenty of EVOO on hand and I have a ton of garlic from the garden. I pour in enough EVOO to make a thin paste of the Basil leaves and then throw in the rest of the ingredients.

After finally getting all the basil processed, I ended up with over 1/2 gallon or Pesto.  I poured it into ziplocks since my freezer space is at a premium.  I prefer storing in jars, but I need to flatten as much as possible right now until I get another freezer.  We’re ready for the dark days when fresh food grown on our little farm is hard to find.  Although I don’t eat pasta, Pesto is good on chicken with some marinara sauce and topped with melted raw cheese!  Oh yum!

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I love using my Gma’s Yellow Ware bowl. I don’t know why, I just feel like it grounds me and reminds me of her and her old world ways of Eastern Europe.

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