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Pesto alla genovese comme il faut

Pesto alla genovese comme il faut
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  • Pesto alla genovese comme il faut

    Post #1 - August 17th, 2005, 4:07 pm
    Post #1 - August 17th, 2005, 4:07 pm Post #1 - August 17th, 2005, 4:07 pm
    Pesto alla genovese... comme il faut

    Pesto is a simple thing often ruined, its chief enemies being laziness and parsimony and, paradoxically, their opposites. In other words, good pesto depends –– like so many of the glorious foods of Italy –– on excellent ingredients, balanced carefully, treated with an experienced but not overzealous hand, and ultimately applied soberly. 'Kicking it up a notch' is no more appropriate in making pesto alla genovese than is skimping on ingredients or taking shortcuts in the preparation...

    Given my purist inclinations, I think all that is true but, of course, one sometimes makes adaptations as dictated by necessity and perhaps –– hopefully only after legitimate exploration of traditional approaches –– one may make a few non-canonical adaptations according to personal taste. After all, one should eat as one prefers to eat (disregarding for the nonce the sage advice of our physicians).

    Be that as it may, I do like to stay pretty close to the traditional approach both to making pesto alla genovese and to employing it. Those adjustments I make according to personal preferences all fall within the established parameters of traditional practice in Liguria and, aside from substitutions for Ligurian olive oil and pecorino sardo required by necessity, my versions are straightforward and a little old fashioned. For one thing, I like to do the actual work of making the sauce in the pre-cuisinart way, namely with mortar and pestle; I like the texture –– actually textures –– I can achieve that way. With regard to ingredients, I use different mixtures of two of the components, depeding on what is on hand and what I’m in the mood for: for the cheese component, I generally use a mixture of pecorino (for want of sardo, it must be romano) and parmigiano, either in even measures or with pecorino making up 2/3 of the total. Similarly, with the nut component, I tend to like to use a mixture of pine nuts and walnuts, again either in even measures or with pine nuts making up 2/3 of the total, though I also like to make it in the more mainstream manner with only pignoli. The amount of garlic I use varies a little but I definitely lean away from the Emerilesque philosophy; too much garlic ruins the balance here for me. A little sea salt, a not too assertive and certainly not bitter olive oil and, of course, the fresh basil, preferably with tender, delicate flavoured leaves, e basta.

    ***

    Just as over-saucing is an American vice that produces plates of forlorn noodles and dumplings drowning in tomatoey or creamy or cheesy seas, it also sometimes results in ‘pesto-ised’ or ‘pestified’ farinaceous mounds that seem almost to resemble grass- or moss-covered hillocks. There most definitely is such a thing as too much pesto and, unlike red sauce, which can perhaps be pushed aside, excessive pesto can only overwhelm whatever it accompanies.

    With regard to what it accompanies, in the States it seems that can include almost anything. Some innovative pairings with pesto are surely good but many I’ve heard of seem quite ill-advised. Let each of us decide for himself what the civilised limitations are in this regard.

    In its primary, traditional function, pesto is paired with a fairly specific and interesting set of pasta types, most especially trenette and trofie. Both of those types I like very much but when I recently made my first batch of pesto this summer, I was in the mood to use two ingredients commonly included in pasta and pesto pairings in Liguria but not commonly included here, namely potatoes and green beans. Especially with the inclusion of potatoes, I like a form of pasta with a little more presence, a little more body to it, and so choose to use mafaldine, long broad noodles with a curly edge. The green beans and potatoes were both purchased at the Nichols Farm stand at the Green City Market and without doubt, the little red new poatoes seen below really stood out in the dish: they were exceptionally good both with regard to texture and taste.

    Ecco il mio bel piatto di pasta al pesto con patate e fagiolini:

    Image

    The presence of potatoes and green beans in this preparation, in addition to rendering it a more substantial dish, also lend it an especially appealing set of contrasting textures, especially when each major component is cooked with appropriate care. One may think that the dish looks not to have a sufficient dose of pesto applied to it but I can assure you that with the intensity of the flavours of the freshly made sauce, the dish was amply dressed and properly balanced. All in all, the dish pictured above –– pasta al pesto con patate e fagiolini ––is to my mind one of the very best primi in the collective culinary arsenal of Italy.

    Bon pro',
    Antonius

    Links to other recipes and cooking notes by this writer: http://lthforum.com/bb/viewtopic.php?p=55649#55649
    Last edited by Antonius on February 14th, 2007, 3:04 pm, edited 1 time in total.
    Alle Nerven exzitiert von dem gewürzten Wein -- Anwandlung von Todesahndungen -- Doppeltgänger --
    - aus dem Tagebuch E.T.A. Hoffmanns, 6. Januar 1804.
    ________
    Na sir is na seachain an cath.
  • Post #2 - August 17th, 2005, 5:32 pm
    Post #2 - August 17th, 2005, 5:32 pm Post #2 - August 17th, 2005, 5:32 pm
    Antonius,
    You forgot to mention last decade's biggest culinary faux pas:
    Pesto Mayonnaise.
    Take a sauce (pesto) perfectly good by itself in moderation, spread it on the bread to be used for a sandwich, and you're golden.
    Add mayo? No thanks.

    Would you add mayo to the marinara on an eggplant parmesan sandwich?

    Would you add mayo to the hollandaise to (cough) upscale an egg sandwich?

    Would you add mayo to chipotle peppers in adobo? Sadly, many do..., I'll take this instead.
  • Post #3 - August 17th, 2005, 5:44 pm
    Post #3 - August 17th, 2005, 5:44 pm Post #3 - August 17th, 2005, 5:44 pm
    A:

    Do you typically use red potatoes for this preparation? I have always used a mealier potato for pesto with beans and potatoes. I find that the slightly disintegrating potato adds a creaminess to the sauce and helps to spread it out in a way that is infinitely better than adding more sauce or simply more oil. The potatoes themselves become a real background note in that prep, however.

    Also, do you cook the potatoes and beans in with the pasta?

    Thanks.
    A
  • Post #4 - August 17th, 2005, 5:50 pm
    Post #4 - August 17th, 2005, 5:50 pm Post #4 - August 17th, 2005, 5:50 pm
    JoelF wrote:Would you add mayo to the hollandaise to (cough) upscale an egg sandwich?


    Isn't a hollandaise essentially mayo anyway? That's like asking "would you add mayo to ranch dressing" :P

    I agree with you, though.
    Ed Fisher
    my chicago food photos

    RIP LTH.
  • Post #5 - August 17th, 2005, 5:56 pm
    Post #5 - August 17th, 2005, 5:56 pm Post #5 - August 17th, 2005, 5:56 pm
    Not to butt into Antonius's gig, but I would point out that the classic Ligurian meal of trofie con pesto, from gas stations to the Splendido, includes beans and somewhat waxy little potatoes (not red) that are just barely done. Some might say underdone, if they happen to be from a place where folks like their taters baked. Reds or the small yellow ones here seem like natural substitutes.

    I've got some pix of hand-made by me (literally by hand: you push a little blob of eggless paste off of your palm) trofie/trofiette with pesto, beans and potatoes somewhere around here, I swear.

    Tony, your pasta pics speak a thousand words.
  • Post #6 - August 17th, 2005, 6:25 pm
    Post #6 - August 17th, 2005, 6:25 pm Post #6 - August 17th, 2005, 6:25 pm
    Jeff,

    Thanks for the clarification re: type of potato. I generally prefer waxy potatoes, but for some reason had developed a different habit with this dish.

    I also like potatoes on the underdone side, which Himself occasionally objects to.

    The best pesto I ever made was with basil I grew in the foothills outside Denver, and lacking a mortar and pestle, I hand chopped it with a chef's knife. It was my first meeting with my (then future) sister in law and neither she nor Himself had ever had it before. If seduction by food is a way to get to "know" someone, this was but one of the dishes that worked well for me :wink:
  • Post #7 - August 17th, 2005, 9:12 pm
    Post #7 - August 17th, 2005, 9:12 pm Post #7 - August 17th, 2005, 9:12 pm
    JoelF wrote:Would you add mayo to chipotle peppers in adobo?

    Yes, and it's damn good. Hellman's, pureed chipotle in adobo, squeeze of fresh lime juice and a bit of salt to bring out the flavors. Whisk and, Bob's yer Uncle, Chipotle Mayo.

    I often serve Chipotle mayo with grilled beef tenderloin, chilled overnight, sliced thin(ish) to serve as sandwiches.
    Image

    I am guilty of 'crimes' against pesto as well, as I often make large batches of pesto, freeze in couple of tablespoon amounts and use for everything from pasta to flavor bombs in chicken soup.

    The crime against pesto I am not guilty of is over-saucing pasta. I rarely did this in the past, at least not after spending 3-weeks in Italy in 2000, and never now that I am a student in the Chef Antonious School of Italian Cookery.

    Note to Antonious: Terrific looking pasta!

    Enjoy,
    Gary
    Hold my beer . . .

    Low & Slow
  • Post #8 - August 18th, 2005, 6:25 am
    Post #8 - August 18th, 2005, 6:25 am Post #8 - August 18th, 2005, 6:25 am
    annieb wrote:A:

    Do you typically use red potatoes for this preparation? I have always used a mealier potato for pesto with beans and potatoes. I find that the slightly disintegrating potato adds a creaminess to the sauce and helps to spread it out in a way that is infinitely better than adding more sauce or simply more oil. The potatoes themselves become a real background note in that prep, however.

    Also, do you cook the potatoes and beans in with the pasta?

    Thanks.
    A


    Yes, I concur with what Jeff says and myself like a waxy, boiling type potato in this dish, though I think it would work very well in a somewhat different way to use a starchier potato type. What I like generally is the contrast in textures between potato and pasta and that was very much achieved in the right way with those little red new potatoes, but as mentioned above, those little new potatos also had an excellent flavour. The pesto came out very nicely, the pasta was al dente, the green beans were flavourful and cooked right, but the potatoes elevated this particular plate to a higher level. Note too how they had a little bit of pink in the actual flesh beneath the skin (somewhat visible in the photo) and in this sense they sort of looked the way radishes do. In any event, thank God for farmers' markets and serious farmers. Thank God for the potato...

    I cook the potatoes and green beans in the (heavily) salted water in the pasta pot but do so before adding the pasta. I scoop them out with a spider-thingy when they're just a little ways from arriving at the point of cookedness desired in the final dish and set them aside. Then I cook the pasta for the requisite few minutes and about a minute before the pasta is done (and, as a good Campanian, I tend to like it quite al dente), I add the potatoes and beans for a quick little reheat (residual heating has pretty much finished their actual cooking). Both the potatoes and the green beans should themselves be at an analogously slightly 'undercooked', i.e. al dente stage. But if they cook slightly more, I wouldn't throw them out or commit ritual suicide. But, as I said, the beans and spuds are there to my mind as much for textural purposes as for taste and nutrition.

    ***

    Jeff:

    I haven't specifically made trofie by hand but I do make something similar (though larger). I think I'll go that route next time; hopefully, I'll be able to find some more little potatoes of a quality similar to the ones I had this time. I remember you mentioning having made trofie some time back but don't remember seeing any pictures... If you find 'em, post 'em; I think they're an especially handsome looking form of pasta.

    Antonius
    Alle Nerven exzitiert von dem gewürzten Wein -- Anwandlung von Todesahndungen -- Doppeltgänger --
    - aus dem Tagebuch E.T.A. Hoffmanns, 6. Januar 1804.
    ________
    Na sir is na seachain an cath.
  • Post #9 - August 18th, 2005, 8:25 am
    Post #9 - August 18th, 2005, 8:25 am Post #9 - August 18th, 2005, 8:25 am
    G Wiv wrote:The crime against pesto I am not guilty of is over-saucing pasta. I rarely did this in the past, at least not after spending 3-weeks in Italy in 2000, and never now that I am a student in the Chef Antonious School of Italian Cookery.


    Gary:

    You are indeed a bright and promising student, though I believe you are a little behind in your homework.

    Antonius

    P.S. I've been hoping you'd leave a smoked brisket on my desk one of these days.
    Alle Nerven exzitiert von dem gewürzten Wein -- Anwandlung von Todesahndungen -- Doppeltgänger --
    - aus dem Tagebuch E.T.A. Hoffmanns, 6. Januar 1804.
    ________
    Na sir is na seachain an cath.
  • Post #10 - August 18th, 2005, 8:33 am
    Post #10 - August 18th, 2005, 8:33 am Post #10 - August 18th, 2005, 8:33 am
    Antonius wrote:P.S. I've been hoping you'd leave a smoked brisket on my desk one of these days.

    Chef A,

    Subtle hint taken. :wink:

    Enjoy,
    Gary
    Hold my beer . . .

    Low & Slow
  • Post #11 - August 18th, 2005, 1:04 pm
    Post #11 - August 18th, 2005, 1:04 pm Post #11 - August 18th, 2005, 1:04 pm
    Antonius wrote:Pesto alla genovese... comme il faut

    All in all, the dish pictured above –– pasta al pesto con patate e fagiolini ––is to my mind one of the very best primi in the collective culinary arsenal of Italy.

    Bon pro',
    Antonius


    What would be a classic pairing for secondi (or is that seconde?); I'm been pressing the Condiment Queen to whip up some pesto before the CSA supplied basil goes to rot. Any suggestions?

    As to the additions to mayo thing, that bothers me not. I LIKE things added to mayo. Plain mayo (unless the batch of homemade my wife just whipped up) does not thrill me that much, nor does catsup, but a roast beef sammy with Russian dressing, ideal. I'd never put plain mayo on my salad, but as Slate pointed out, I like many, am very happy with ranch (or green goddess).

    Rob
    Think Yiddish, Dress British - Advice of Evil Ronnie to me.
  • Post #12 - August 18th, 2005, 3:11 pm
    Post #12 - August 18th, 2005, 3:11 pm Post #12 - August 18th, 2005, 3:11 pm
    I have frequently been a judge in cooking contests. In one instance, a contestant's pesto was so delicious, and so superior to others that I pestered her into giving me the recipe. The secret: She replaced about half the olive oil with softened butter.

    I would have expected such a preparation to muddy the flavor of the basil, but it did not; it only made the finished dish richer and less oily.

    Like G Wiv, when I have a lot of basil on hand I often make batches of pesto to freeze and use in small quanitities later, though generally I find I get best results by just pureeing the basil and oil/butter to freeze and adding cheese, garlic and nuts at serving time. Garlic, in particular, changes flavor when frozen, while cheese and nuts change in consistency. I like to use freshly toasted nuts and leave them a bit chunky.
  • Post #13 - August 18th, 2005, 3:44 pm
    Post #13 - August 18th, 2005, 3:44 pm Post #13 - August 18th, 2005, 3:44 pm
    Antonius wrote: Note too how they had a little bit of pink in the actual flesh beneath the skin (somewhat visible in the photo) and in this sense they sort of looked the way radishes do.


    Interesting that you should mention this. When I first looked at the picture before reading your initial post I thought to myself, hmm pasta with radishes, now that's something you don't see every day. :shock:
    Steve Z.

    “Only the pure in heart can make a good soup.”
    ― Ludwig van Beethoven
  • Post #14 - August 19th, 2005, 12:44 pm
    Post #14 - August 19th, 2005, 12:44 pm Post #14 - August 19th, 2005, 12:44 pm
    Rob, secondi in Liguria tend to be mushrooms, fish, rabbit, or stuffed vegetables (cabbage, eggplant, peppers). I don't know much about the cuisine, but I recall having mushrooms in a cream sauce south of Genova as a secondo (I can't recall the name of the dish) following a primo of pumpkin ravioli al pesto. My sense from driving through the province a few times is that they eat lots of vegetables and fish, and much less meat than in most of northern Italy.

    If I were making trenette al pesto, I'd consider following it with coniglio alle erbe (rabbit sauteed in olive oil with herbs and juniper. you could do the rabbit with green olives, too.), seppie coi piselli (cuttlefish with peas), or grilled fish, particularly red mullet. Any of the above would wash down nicely with a Vermentino.
  • Post #15 - August 19th, 2005, 2:20 pm
    Post #15 - August 19th, 2005, 2:20 pm Post #15 - August 19th, 2005, 2:20 pm
    I concur across the board with what Choey says in general terms about Ligurian cuisine. They have lots and lots of nice fish recipes and have been especially inventive with those old dried staples, baccalà and stoccafisso. They are, indeed, not especially large consumers of meat but have several really nice and distinctive dishes. Among these is the famous cimma or cima alla genovese, which is an elaborately stuffed veal stomach. The basic Ligurian tripe dish is a nice stew of the tripe accompanied by potatoes and aromatics, with tomatoes and white wine. Also interesting is the Ligurian stracotto ('pot roast') with tomatoes and wine and sage. Yet another veal dish is the well-known tomaxelle, which are, in effect, the Ligurian version of oiseaux sans têtes, that is, veal rolls filled with a mixture of ground meat, bread, and seasonings; the rolls are fried in butter and served with a pan sauce made with a little stock.

    One nice thing about a primo of pasta al pesto is that the absence of tomatoes in the primo allows for their prominent presence in the secondo. I myself would, however, avoid a secondo that features basil very prominently, for balance and variety's sake. The rabbit or cuttlefish (one can substitute squid) dishes mentioned by Choey would be a nice match, so too the tomaxelle. There's also a nice swordfish recipe I know from Liguria (with pine nuts) but we're not supposed to eat swordfish these days...

    Antonius
    Alle Nerven exzitiert von dem gewürzten Wein -- Anwandlung von Todesahndungen -- Doppeltgänger --
    - aus dem Tagebuch E.T.A. Hoffmanns, 6. Januar 1804.
    ________
    Na sir is na seachain an cath.
  • Post #16 - August 20th, 2005, 6:22 pm
    Post #16 - August 20th, 2005, 6:22 pm Post #16 - August 20th, 2005, 6:22 pm
    I'm not nearly ambitious enough to sign up for Professor Wiviott's WSM Course, but the Chef Antonious School of Italian Cookery makes it all look so easy and delicious that I can't help but give it a try. His Bucatini alla Matriciana has been in regular rotation since January. Today I made the pasta al pesto con patate e fagiolini. Remarkably easy and quick, even what with making the pesto. And beautiful (I also used red potatoes). Not to mention delicious. I've only made pesto once before, and it never would have occurred to me to use pecarino, which I like to much, in combination with the parmesan. Anyway, great recipe, great explanations, great food. Thank you.
  • Post #17 - August 22nd, 2005, 6:58 am
    Post #17 - August 22nd, 2005, 6:58 am Post #17 - August 22nd, 2005, 6:58 am
    Ann Fisher wrote:I'm not nearly ambitious enough to sign up for Professor Wiviott's WSM Course, but the Chef Antonious School of Italian Cookery makes it all look so easy and delicious that I can't help but give it a try. His Bucatini alla Matriciana has been in regular rotation since January. Today I made the pasta al pesto con patate e fagiolini. Remarkably easy and quick, even what with making the pesto. And beautiful (I also used red potatoes). Not to mention delicious. I've only made pesto once before, and it never would have occurred to me to use pecarino, which I like to much, in combination with the parmesan. Anyway, great recipe, great explanations, great food. Thank you.


    Ann:

    Thank you very much for all the kind words! :D :oops: :D I'm really glad you like the version with the potatoes and green beans and you're right, the use of red potatoes gives the dish a little visual boost with the relief from just shades of green.

    I'm quite certain for historical reasons that pesto alla genovese was originally made just with pecorino, probably of local Ligurian origin insofar as it was available but especially with pecorino sardo; the Genovesi were the distributors and shippers of Sardinian cheese throughout the Mediterranean in the Middle Ages. Nowadays, I think most recipes -- especially outside Liguria -- call for just Parmesan and that hardly produces a bad dish. Just pecorino also produces an excellent result, but the mixture of the two here -- a mixture which I otherwise generally eschew -- works very well indeed.

    Antonius
    Alle Nerven exzitiert von dem gewürzten Wein -- Anwandlung von Todesahndungen -- Doppeltgänger --
    - aus dem Tagebuch E.T.A. Hoffmanns, 6. Januar 1804.
    ________
    Na sir is na seachain an cath.
  • Post #18 - August 24th, 2005, 10:08 pm
    Post #18 - August 24th, 2005, 10:08 pm Post #18 - August 24th, 2005, 10:08 pm
    Ann Fisher wrote:I'm not nearly ambitious enough to sign up for Professor Wiviott's WSM Course, but the Chef Antonious School of Italian Cookery makes it all look so easy and delicious that I can't help but give it a try.

    Ann,

    I'll make you a deal on the WSM course, first 5-Steps are free. :)

    I, also, am a student of the Chef Antonious School of Italian Cookery and tonight pasta al pesto con patate e fagiolini, or as I've been referring to it, Pesto Antonious, was on the menu. For those that choose not read further, I'll get right to the point, satisfying, delicious and pretty easy, even using a mortar and pestle.

    Image

    A little elbow grease and, voila, pesto.
    Image

    I used Antonious's preference of Mafaldine, but (for shame) olive oil from Puglia instead of Liguria.
    Image

    Even with olive oil from Puglia, and straight pine nuts instead of a mix of pine nuts and walnuts, my Pesto Antonious turned out quite well. Both Ellen and I had second helpings.

    Pesto Antonious
    Image
    Image

    Caprese salad
    Image

    Thanks Antonious.

    Enjoy,
    Gary
    Hold my beer . . .

    Low & Slow
  • Post #19 - August 27th, 2005, 8:59 am
    Post #19 - August 27th, 2005, 8:59 am Post #19 - August 27th, 2005, 8:59 am
    Gary:

    I'm very happy to hear you liked that version. Your bowl of pasta there looks perfect, at least to me.

    No shame in not using Ligurian olive oil. At the start of my original post I present the 'purist' take on pesto alla geneovese but, as I say further on, I never have any Ligurian olive oil on hand and don't worry about it. I do think it preferable to use an oil that isn't too complex and assertive but beyond that, I'm easy. When I make pesto, I use oil from Umbria or Lazio usually (which I always have on hand).

    By the way, what's the Pugliese oil I see in the pictures (the name on the bottle isn't visible)? I don't think I've tried that one yet and I always like trying different olive oils.

    I also like the looks (and size) of your mortar and pestle.

    A
    Alle Nerven exzitiert von dem gewürzten Wein -- Anwandlung von Todesahndungen -- Doppeltgänger --
    - aus dem Tagebuch E.T.A. Hoffmanns, 6. Januar 1804.
    ________
    Na sir is na seachain an cath.
  • Post #20 - August 27th, 2005, 10:06 am
    Post #20 - August 27th, 2005, 10:06 am Post #20 - August 27th, 2005, 10:06 am
    the use of red potatoes gives the dish a little visual boost with the relief from just shades of green


    Not when you follow the original recipe and PEEL them it doesn't! I should have looked at the pics again instead of following the recipe, as I both peeled and slice per the Saveur one I understand you use, and the taters were, I thought, a bit lost in all those train tracks. Your way, with halved skin-on potatoes, certainly looks more interesting as a plate.

    I had some little purple tomatoes, now THAT would have been a visual boost.

    I also like the looks (and size) of your mortar and pestle.


    Keep it clean, guys. You'll be telling "The Aristocrats" next.

    I must admit, at the risk of being thrown out of the pesto 5-step, that I used the food processor. On the other hand, I found peccorino sardo at Whole Foods and it made the cheese part of the flavor definitely more dimensional than parmaggiano alone. The other great thing was using a bunch of really fragrant basil from Nichols at Green City-- I had to fill the quantity out with some from Whole Foods which was fine enough, but the Nichols stuff was super-basil and it really brought a bright flavor to it all.

    As I said elsewhere, a big hit with the family, cheesey enough to fall into Liam's definition of Mac and Cheese, and plenty more for tonight, too.
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  • Post #21 - August 27th, 2005, 10:18 am
    Post #21 - August 27th, 2005, 10:18 am Post #21 - August 27th, 2005, 10:18 am
    Mike G wrote: I should have looked at the pics again instead of following the recipe, as I both peeled and slice per the Saveur one I understand you use, and the taters were, I thought, a bit lost in all those train tracks.


    I've never seen the Saveur recipe; I learned how to make pesto a very long time ago and just wing it within certain parameters. I did recently spend a lot of time reading stuff on Ligurian cuisine; thence my comments about 'mainstream' and 'purist' approaches.

    As I said elsewhere, a big hit with the family, cheesey enough to fall into Liam's definition of Mac and Cheese, and plenty more for tonight, too.


    Excellent. Greetings to Liam and Myles. Now, if only Lucantonius would eat something that's green (due to real allergy, he would have to have the all pine nuts version, but due to pseudo-allergy, that is, aesthetic aversion, the nut problem is not a problem).

    I think he overdosed on dandelion greens as a baby.

    A
    Alle Nerven exzitiert von dem gewürzten Wein -- Anwandlung von Todesahndungen -- Doppeltgänger --
    - aus dem Tagebuch E.T.A. Hoffmanns, 6. Januar 1804.
    ________
    Na sir is na seachain an cath.
  • Post #22 - August 27th, 2005, 12:18 pm
    Post #22 - August 27th, 2005, 12:18 pm Post #22 - August 27th, 2005, 12:18 pm
    Mike G wrote: per the Saveur one I understand you use,

    Mike,

    Saveur recipe was the guideline I used for the pesto portion of Pesto Antonious. Sorry, should have been more clear when I emailed you.

    Antonious 'don't need no stinking recipe' to make pesto. :)

    Enjoy,
    Gary
    Hold my beer . . .

    Low & Slow
  • Post #23 - August 27th, 2005, 12:49 pm
    Post #23 - August 27th, 2005, 12:49 pm Post #23 - August 27th, 2005, 12:49 pm
    Antonius wrote:By the way, what's the Pugliese oil I see in the pictures (the name on the bottle isn't visible)? I don't think I've tried that one yet and I always like trying different olive oils.

    Antonious,

    Olive oil is My Brother's Oil from Isola Imports. I was buying it at their retail store on Grand, but they closed the retail shop. Bari carries, or at least used to carry, the oil. In looking at the Isola Imports web site, it seems they still carry My Brother's Oil from Puglia, but it's in a fancier bottle. They also list Signature Oil from Puglia which is "carefully stone crushed in small batches to assure quality and ultimate taste."

    Antonius wrote:I also like the looks (and size) of your mortar and pestle.

    Bought at Thai Grocery for $16, maybe $18. You could also buy the same exact mortar and pestle from Chef's Catalog for $60.

    Thanks again, Pesto Antonious is really quite good.

    Enjoy,
    Gary
    Hold my beer . . .

    Low & Slow
  • Post #24 - August 27th, 2005, 4:03 pm
    Post #24 - August 27th, 2005, 4:03 pm Post #24 - August 27th, 2005, 4:03 pm
    G Wiv wrote:Antonious 'don't need no stinking recipe' to make pesto. :)


    :lol:

    Good thing I'm not at all sensitive. :roll: :wink:

    Thanks for the tip on the m&p at Thai Grocery. I've seen that oil before but never got around to trying it; I'll keep an eye out for it.

    A
    Alle Nerven exzitiert von dem gewürzten Wein -- Anwandlung von Todesahndungen -- Doppeltgänger --
    - aus dem Tagebuch E.T.A. Hoffmanns, 6. Januar 1804.
    ________
    Na sir is na seachain an cath.
  • Post #25 - September 6th, 2005, 8:39 pm
    Post #25 - September 6th, 2005, 8:39 pm Post #25 - September 6th, 2005, 8:39 pm
    G Wiv wrote:now that I am a student in the Chef Antonious School of Italian Cookery

    Maybe not for much longer. :)

    With Antonious in Merry Ol' England I reverted to my old ways and made a quick batch of American style, too much is almost enough, spaghetti sauce. :)

    Saute onion, garlic (lots of garlic), with a couple of minced Thai peppers and 3-4 finely chopped white mushrooms. Add ground beef, drain most of the fat. Fresh basil, sliced mushroom, can of San Marzano tomatoes, crushed by hand, and a splash of red wine vinegar.

    Simmer for a while, taste for seasoning (salt/pepper/crushed red), liberally add to pasta, fresh grate Parmigiano-Reggiano scatter some fresh torn basil and enjoy. We also had a caprese salad, fresh mozzarella and tomato from Caputo's on Harlem.

    Guess I'm out of the program. :roll:

    Enjoy,
    Gary
    Hold my beer . . .

    Low & Slow
  • Post #26 - September 7th, 2005, 7:26 am
    Post #26 - September 7th, 2005, 7:26 am Post #26 - September 7th, 2005, 7:26 am
    G Wiv wrote:With Antonious in Merry Ol' England I reverted to my old ways and made a quick batch of American style, too much is almost enough, spaghetti sauce. :)


    Until Antonius gets back from Belgium this response - mutatis mutandis - will have to do:

    Now, you did follow all my instructions exactly, didn't you?

    What's that? You saw some tips on the Virtual Weber site, you had some leftover charcoal and figured what the hey, you smoked bologna instead of chicken... come here. No, closer. Stand right there and look at me.

    SMACK!


    (Shamelessly plagiarized from http://wiviott.com/dinner1.html )

    Amata
  • Post #27 - September 7th, 2005, 1:25 pm
    Post #27 - September 7th, 2005, 1:25 pm Post #27 - September 7th, 2005, 1:25 pm
    Amata wrote:Until Antonius gets back from Belgium this response - mutatis mutandis - will have to do:

    Ouch! :oops:
    Hold my beer . . .

    Low & Slow
  • Post #28 - September 10th, 2006, 12:43 pm
    Post #28 - September 10th, 2006, 12:43 pm Post #28 - September 10th, 2006, 12:43 pm
    Since I've been buying so much basil lately-- from loving the basil I get at Green City and being unable to resist buying more than I need for caprese salads-- I've been making a lot of pesto to use it up before it goes bad and making things like the "train tracks" described above. (Great name when it comes to selling the kids on something green.)

    Here are my questions, though:

    1) How long does freshly made pesto last in a container in the fridge, do you suppose? Considering it's in oil, that could be a long time I guess, but I don't really know. I might make some extra batches with the in-season basil before it's gone, if it's good for at least a couple of months. (Would you pour some extra on top then? Or would it just soak in?)

    2) Could you freeze it? I know freeze and cheese don't go together, but I wonder how much you'd really notice it with crumbled tiny bits of parmesan or peccorino sardo. Okay, that's probably blasphemy, I know.

    Anyway, this is a great and easy dish (if you need a more explicit recipe than Antonius' description, go here, though you hardly do) that deserves a bump up at this time of year.
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  • Post #29 - September 10th, 2006, 1:13 pm
    Post #29 - September 10th, 2006, 1:13 pm Post #29 - September 10th, 2006, 1:13 pm
    Mike...

    I remember reading about pesto that if you freeze it, just don't freeze it with the cheese.

    Make the pesto portion -- the olive oil, basil puree base and leave the cheese out -- you can add it in when you thaw your frozen puree. I think it's good for awhile in the freezer that way.

    The one question I still have is whether you have to leave the pignoli out as well. I can't recall that.

    Shannon
  • Post #30 - September 10th, 2006, 1:14 pm
    Post #30 - September 10th, 2006, 1:14 pm Post #30 - September 10th, 2006, 1:14 pm
    Oh...and on another note -- I picked up some of the Isola Buffala mozz at Fox and Obel yesterday and I've got some lovely juicy tomatoes for a Sunday night caprese. I'm really excited about it.

    shan

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