This pesto, made with basil and lemon verbena, is packed with fresh, intense, delicious flavor. It’s rich, smooth and its lovely fragrance unbelievably divine! The same sweet 12-year old who grew the tomatoes in my Avocado Soft Boiled Egg Toast Recipe, is responsible for this gorgeous basil and lemon verbena. In fact, my son is the reason we have an herb and vegetable garden. It was all his idea and it’s so awesome! I find myself running out to grab a bundle of herbs almost every day. And clearly, today was no exception!
Lemon verbena is so incredibly aromatic! If you gently rub the leaves, you will release the most lovely scent imaginable! The fragrance is captivating, relaxing and simply beautiful!And how beautiful are these basil varieties!? This pesto is super delicious on everything from fish and poultry to fruit and toast! My gardener (reminder: sweet 12-year-old son), even dips chips into it!
- ¼ cup pine nuts
- 5 cups loosely packed basil leaves, washed and dried (see notes)
- approximately 2 dozen lemon verbena leaves, washed and dried
- ¼ cup grated Parmesan cheese
- 3 small garlic cloves, peeled, with root end trimmed off
- ½ teaspoon granulated sugar
- ¼ cup plus 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- sea salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste (here's How to Season to Taste)
- Add the pine nuts to a small sauté pan and place it over medium-low heat. Moving the pan around often, heat just until they're golden, aromatic and shiny, about 3 minutes. They will be shiny from the oils coming to the surface. (Be careful, as they can go from just right to too dark in seconds.) Set aside to cool.
- Add the basil and lemon verbena to a food processor fitted with the blade attachment and blend until they're finely chopped.
- Add the toasted pine nuts, Parmesan, garlic and sugar and blend until everything is mixed.
- Then add the extra virgin olive oil and blend until it's a smooth mixture.
- Season to taste with salt and pepper. (Here's How to Season to Taste.)
The pesto can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to about a week.