PRESERVE SAFELY YOUR PESTO

Three methods for preserving your freshly-made pesto, while maintaining its integrity of color, taste and safety.

Tour Italy in 2022

Buongiorno amici:

Making pesto at home is relatively simple, and these three simple tricks will help you maintain all its freshness and flavor. The delicious condiment for pasta and fillings can become a great ally throughout the year, and keeping all its freshness and taste, is fundamental.

To make pesto, you need very few ingredients, with fresh basil being the prominent one. Wash three ounces of basil in cold water and dry it on absorbent kitchen paper. Place the basil in a bowl, possibly made of wood. Add one tablespoon of Parmigiano, and one of Pecorino, with the addition of one ounce of pine nuts. Puree the ingredients using an immersion blender for 30 seconds and pour extra virgin olive oil in a steady stream for additional 30 seconds. (You will need eighty milliliters to achieve a smooth and rich consistency). Crush one garlic clove and add to the mix. Spin for additional 30 seconds, and the pesto is ready. (These steps will provide enough pesto for two people, or servings)

Many recipes list a food processor as a mechanical tool, but the fast spin of the blade will damage the basil, extracting too much water from the stems, and turn the color much darker.

Now, let's see how you can preserve your homemade pesto for a long time while maintaining all its freshness and flavor.

Method 1. Perhaps the most practical. Freeze the pesto in silicone ice cube molds. Then, carefully wash the molds thoroughly and position the pesto inside each space.

Method 2. Place the pesto in glass jars fitted with clean and new sealers. Wash and dry the jars beforehand and be sure that no impurities are present. You can keep the pesto in the fridge for up to three months. Seal the pesto with a layer of olive oil for additional protection. The olive oil layer will prevent mold. After you use the pesto, keep adding oil to the top of the surface.

Method 3. Vacuum packed is another clever method, but a little more involved. Fill the jars as you would for method 2, wrap them in a cloth, and boil them for at least 20 minutes in boiling water. Allow the jars to cool and keep them in the dark for at least five months, away from direct light. Remember to begin the boiling process in cold water for method three to prevent the glass from unpleasant cracking.

{Image attribution via Waxing Kara} with a great recipe. Check it out!

Thanks for reading. Eat safe! Ciao Chef W

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