2 for 1 Basil and Mint Pesto

When there’s plenty of basil, make one of these delicious pestos. Basil and Mint Pesto can be used for pizza, pasta, in place of mayo, on a grilled cheese or even corn on the cob. 

Basil and Mint-Pesto | 2 Cookin Mamas

Did you know that pestos were strictly made with basil, olive oil, garlic and cheese? If using, say cilantro instead of basil, it can not be called a pesto. Who knew!

My husband and I went to our city’s green market this past weekend and picked up a huge bunch of basil. (Just look at my lovely basil!) I wish that my basil would grow like theirs but no such luck. Of course, with all this basil on hand I had to think up something to make with it and besides caprese salad, which we have had twice, I thought pesto would be delicious.

Basil Leaves

First I made the traditional pesto, which I always use for my pesto pasta, but there are literally hundreds of ways to use it. It can be the base of a pizza , as a condiment mixed with mayonnaise on a BLT, I’ve used it to dress up a grilled cheese sandwich (recipe coming soon), mixed it with butter for corn on the cob and given it a toss with green beans and a little squeeze of lemon for a tasty side dish.

Ninja ready to goSecondly, since I still had a pile of basil, I decided to try adding some extra herbs and mint to use as a sauce on lamb chops. And wow! was I surprised at how delicious it was. It got a high five from my husband so I was pretty proud of myself. I even have some leftover that I am going to toss with some sauteed shrimp and serve over a quinoa pasta. Two meals with one sauce – love it!

Basil and Mint Pesto | 2 Cookin Mamas

And this gave me another chance to use my new Ninja blender. Yay! I am having so much fun seeing how many different ways I can use it. And it whipped this sauce out in a matter of seconds!

Traditional Basil Pesto

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups packed fresh basil leaves
  • 2 cloves fresh garlic, chopped
  • 1/4 cup pine nuts
  • 2/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • Salt & pepper to tast
  • 1/2 cup Pecorino Romano or Parmesan cheese, grated

Directions:

In a Ninja blender or food processor, combine first 3 ingredients. Pulse until coarsely chopped. Slowly pour in oil until mixture is smooth and well mixed. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Mix in cheese and serve immediately.

Basil & Mint Pesto

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 of the traditional pesto above
  • 3/4 cup fresh mint leaves
  • 1/4 cup parsley
  • 1/4 cup cheese (if not already added to traditional pesto)

Directions:

While traditional pesto is still in blender, add above 2 ingredients. Pulse until smooth. Mix in cheese if it had not been mixed in with the traditional basil pesto. Serve immediately.

Voila! There you have it! Two great pestos!

 

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