September 27, 2010

sun-dried tomato & almond pesto

tomato & almond pesto

Today was the first day it's felt like autumn in Austin, and if I've ever felt like falling to my knees and kissing the now-less-infernal earth, it was this morning. This sun-dried tomato and almond pesto has been my go-to meal in the busy, hot first weeks of semester, and I think it'll last well into the cooler months. It's seasonal transitional kind of food - a little bit comfort and a little bit light. The ingredient proportions are open to experimentation; these are the ratios I prefer, and I like this with very little garlic. If your sun-dried tomatoes are packed in oil, you might want to use that instead of (or along with) the extra virgin olive oil.

sun-dried tomato & almond pesto

60g whole raw almonds or ground almonds
150g sun-dried tomatoes
40g freshly grated parmesan
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
handful of basil leaves
1 small garlic clove, or less, crushed
sea salt & freshly ground black pepper

If using whole raw almonds: place a small pan over medium heat and allow to get hot. Add almonds and toast for a few minutes until they brown, but don't blacken. Remove from the heat and grind in a spice grinder or blender.

If using ground almonds: place a small pan over medium heat and allow to get heat. Add almonds and toast very carefully for approximately one minute. Remove from heat.

Place all the ingredients in a blender or food processor and process to your desired consistency. I like a smoother pesto for these flavours. Check seasoning and serve with pasta and parmesan.