Pesto Sauce


Every year I grow enough basil leaves to see me through the summer and, most importantly, to make at least one homemade pesto sauce.

A lot of precious leaves are needed to make up 2oz (50g), but it really is worth it as the homemade version puts all the ready-made ones in the shade. If you can get Pecorino Romano it has a more gutsy flavour than Parmesan, but if you can't Parmesan will do. Vegetarians might like to know you can buy a vegetarian style Parmesan cheese from Bookham and Harrsion Farms Ltd

The Delia Online Cookery School: You can now watch how to make Home-made Pesto Sauce in our video, click the image to play.

A picture of Delia's Summer Collection

This recipe is from Delia's Summer Collection. Scroll to the bottom of the page to see questions Lindsey has answered on this recipe

  • method
  • Ingredients


Place the basil, garlic, pine nuts and olive oil together with some salt in a mini-chopper and whizz, then push any unblended basil leaves down with a spatula and whizz again until you have a smooth purée.

Then transfer the purée to a bowl and stir in the grated Pecorino Romano cheese. If you don't have a mini-chopper, you can use a large pestle and mortar to pound the basil, garlic and pine nuts to a paste. Slowly add the salt and cheese, then very gradually add the oil until you have obtained a smooth purée. If you want to make pesto in advance - cover it with cling film, making sure it actually touches the surface of the sauce. You can keep it in the fridge for a week.

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