Sunday, February 20, 2011

Scallops with Pesto

When the weather decided not to cooperate, I had to do a quick change.  I had originally planned to wrap these scallops with prosciutto, skewer them, and have Jake do a quick grill job. 

But since the rain was pouring down last night, and he objected to being out there in the deluge despite offers to hold an umbrella over his head, I ended up searing them in a pan with a sprinkling of pink Himalaya salt and serving them with a dollop of pesto. 

This pesto came from Trader Joe's, but when basil abounds at the farmers' markets during the summer, I make batches of pesto at least every other week. 

Pesto is just a mix of fresh basil, garlic, pine nuts, parmesan cheese, and olive oil.  In a blender, I start with a bunch or two of fresh basil, washed and trimmed, 4 cloves of garlic, 1/2 C of grated parmesan cheese, 1/2 C of pine nuts.  I pulse the blender a few times, drizzle in olive oil, and resume pulsing.  Pulse. Oil. Pulse. Oil.

If you want a smoother, sauce-like pesto, add more olive oil and blend longer; if you want a chunkier pesto, use less oil and blend for less time.  So simple. So fresh. So fragrant.

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