Pesto Genovese

Pesto Genovese

Essential equipment

  • 1 marble mortar
  • 1 wooden pestle


  • 100 gm of fresh Genovese basil. 
  • 30 gm pine nuts ( Sicilian are the best but also in California there is a great quality of this product)
  • 60 g aged Parmigiano Reggiano or Grana Padano cheese freshly grated, do not compromise on this ingredient and make sure is good quality
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 10 gm flaky salt
  • 80 cc Extra Virgin Olive Oil


  1. The marble mortar and wooden pestle are the tools traditionally used to make pesto.
  2. Wash the basil leaves in cold water and dry them on a paper towel but don’t rub them.
  3. In a mortar finely crush the basil leaves the garlic clove and pine nuts ,add  the salt  and cheese to he mixture and keep pounding using a light circular movement of the pestle ,add some of the Extra Virgin Olive from time to time and keep pounding  and mixing until  you obtain a very fine and smooth creamy sauce, pesto should not be greasy and the amount of oil used must be well absorbed and not floating on top
  4. The preparation must be done as quickly as possible to avoid oxidation problems.
NOTE: The reason why, you should not use a blender, is because rather than having its juices released by crushing action of the wooden pestle, the metal blade of the blender will chop the leaves and this action will compromise the flavor.
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