Pesto- Chef James Rigato, Mabel Gray, Hazel Park
1 cup toasted pine nuts
2 cups, packed fresh basil, picked and rinsed
2 cups, packed fresh parsley, picked and rinsed
½ c grated pecorino (or nutritional yeast or a grating vegan cheese to keep vegan)
1 cup olive oil
Salt and Tabasco to taste
Optional: add a few garlic cloves and/or some crushed red chile flakes if you want more kick. You can use all basil if you'd like. We like to add parsley to brighten up the pesto as basil can sometimes oxidize quickly.
And because parsley is delicious too.
In a food processor, add your pine nuts, herbs and pecorino. Start mixing while slowly adding olive oil.
The consistency will be on the thicker side and herbs will be kind of chucky. Season with salt and Tabasco
to your liking. This is a large batch. Feel free to cut in half.
Bruschetta with Basil Antipasto
The choice of this preparation is 'Genoa Green' or a sweet green basil. The tomatoes should be peak of the season and summer ripe. The bread should be a crusty, country-style loaf made with simply flour, yeast, water, salt, and a little oil. The bruschetta can be served as a hearty appetizer or first course, or as a main dish for lunch. If you want a smaller, more formal appetizer, serve with basil antipasto on round toasts made from sliced baguettes.
Makes 12 Portions
1/2 pound (225 g) fresh mozzarella, torn into bite-sized pieces
2 medium tomatoes (about 12 ounces (340ml)), cut into dice
1 cup (240 ml) Vidalia or other sweet onion, thinly sliced and cut into 1/2 inch (1 cm) lengths
Salt and freshly ground pepper
About 3 tablespoons (45 ml) extra-virgin olive oil
Generous 1 cup (240 ml) packed basil leaves, cut crosswise into thin shreds
12 slices bread roughly 3 by 4 inches (8 by 10 cm)
3 or 4 large cloves garlic, peeled
Toss the mozzarella, tomatoes, and onion together in a mixing bowl. Generously salt and pepper, add 2 tablespoons (15 ml) oil, the basil, and toss well. Taste for seasoning.
Toast the bread until golden brown on both sides. Rub the toast firmly with the garlic and drizzle lightly with the remaining oil; use a little more oil if necessary. Evenly distribute the basil antipasto over the bruschetta and serve immediately.