Place all the fresh basil leaves, garlic, parmesan cheese, extra virgin olive oil, salt, and pepper in the blender or food processor and pulse several times. Scrape down the sides of the blender or food processor with a spatula, then pulse again. Keep pulsing until it’s a smooth, paste-like substance.
Put the pesto in a jar, cover it with its lid, then keep it in the fridge until needed.
You can sub half of the basil with rocket or fresh spinach leaves, which will make the basil stay vibrantly green and reduce its strong aromatic smell a bit.
You can use hemp seeds instead of pine nuts and make the pesto nuts free.
Feel free to double or triple this recipe and freeze it to use later.
This Basil Pesto Dressing will stay fresh in the fridge for three days.
You can swap basil leaves for coriander leaves and pine nuts for cashews if you like.
Make it a bit spicy, and add a half pod of jalapeño.
You can make your pesto thick or thin by adding more or less extra virgin olive oil.
Top the pesto with some olive oil to form an oil seal which prevents the pesto from turning dark while kept in the fridge.
Feel free to substitute pine nuts with walnuts.
You can also substitute parmesan with Romano cheese which has a stronger flavour.
Olive oil is the best choice for making pesto; however, avocado oil works well too.