Presto! How to Make Your Own Pesto!

by - 4:51 PM

Pesto di Mandorle (Almond Pesto) Recipe Ingredients
Pesto di Mandorle Recipe (Almond Pesto) Ingredients
Buongiorno miei amata amici! Nora Ephron wrote,
"Pesto is the quiche of the '80s"
and the line was used in Harry Met Sally becoming an instant famous movie quote with foodies. Somehow, pesto has yet to go out of style. Everybody seems to love Pesto. And the fantastic thing about Pesto, is with so many varieties, there is one to please almost anybody.

Organic Basil Leaves in a Mortar with PestlePesto is a basil based sauce originating in Genoa, thus using Genovese Sweet Basil as its primary ingredient. The word Pesto comes from the Latin word "pesta" to pound or crust, and thus we also get the word Pestle in English. What is a pestle some may ask? It is the instrument used to grind in a mortar, made of marble, wood, or steel.

Today many cooks use their food processor and I certainly will not fault you if you so choose. However, in our casa, we use a marble mortar and pestle. Traditionally, Basil, coarse sea salt, pine nuts, olive oil, and parmesan are the ingredients. However, in our recipe, we substitute raw almonds for the pine nuts and add garlic.

Organic Pesto di Mandorle / Organic Almond Pesto Recipe 


  • 1 bunch of organic, Genovese sweet basil
  • 2 Tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil (Trader Joe's)
  • 2 organic garlic cloves, minced
  • 3 Tablespoons of organic, raw almonds, ground fine or Trader Joe's Almond Meal
  • 3 Tablespoons of Parmesan cheese, grated
  • 1 dash of coarse sea salt (fine salt will work too)

Photo of adding Trader Joe's Olive Oil to Pesto RecipeDirections:

Remove the stems from the basil leaves, and rinse them thoroughly under cold water. Place basil in a mortar or food processor. If using a mortar, grind a small amount at a time and add more using a pestle until finely ground. If using a mortar, add olive oil after grinding basil.

Pesto di Mandorle Recipe (Almond Pesto)
Pesto di Mandorle Recipe (Almond Pesto)
If using a food processor add olive oil at the same time as the basil and process until smooth. Combine garlic, nuts, cheese, and salt and continue mixing until well blended.

Depending on your purpose, you can add more olive oil if needed.

Pesto makes a delicious addition to Italian sauces, served as the main sauce, or as a dip.

Photo of Buon Appetito, Giulianna

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5 intriguing comments

  1. I must try doing this. I must! Pesto looks so easy!

  2. This looks great! I haven't used almonds in pesto, only pine nuts. I'll give it a shot.

  3. Sorry Annulla, I did not see your comment sooner. Yes, you should try it. You can even make it in a food processor. My kids love growing our basil and pounding it in our mortar! :)

  4. Domestic Diva, while pine nuts are the #1 traditional choice, almonds follow closely as #2. Almonds are cheaper and easier to acquire. That is our reason for using them. I always have raw almonds on hand from Trader Joe's to use as antacid. Nothing works better. :)

  5. I love pesto. So far I've only had it with pine nuts. Making it with almonds sounds good though. Definitely easier to find, as you said. I'll have to try this.


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