“This is a classic, which you can make on a weeknight or for guests at a weekend dinner. When you cook simply, focus on the quality of ingredients—they will really stand out. Use a beautiful oil, a great salt, and a fragrant bunch of basil. For a neat trick, you can blanch your basil and the pesto will stay quite green.” —Mordechai
1. Roughly purée the basil and pine nuts in a blender or food processor with enough oil to facilitate the process. Stir in the cheese, more oil, lemon juice, and seasoning to taste. This can be stored in the refrigerator, tightly covered, until you’re ready to use it.
2. To prepare the pasta, first add the garlic to the pesto. Pound the cloves in a mortar, then add to the pesto. Alternately, chop the garlic fine and cook it briefly in a little olive oil before adding the pesto.
3. Boil your pasta, toss with the pesto, and top with olive oil and a sprinkle of cheese.
Originally featured in A Dinner Menu for the Olive-Oil-Obsessed