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Yes, I know pesto is Italian and not Spanish but a) I absolutely love it and b) I’ve got so much basil growing in my little herb garden that it made sense to have a go at making my own.

I first tried it when I was working as an au pair in Genoa (the birthplace of pesto) many years ago and was hooked from that first mouthful. I usually just eat it with penne and a sprinkling of extra parmesan over the top, but it’s also tasty as a topping on a baked salmon fillet.

I looked to none other than Jamie Oliver for a nice and easy recipe to follow and found this one. I upped the amount of garlic to two cloves thinking that you can never have too much but I think next time I’ll listen to the expert (or maybe just up it to one clove). I did keep everything else roughly the same though – one reason I like Jamie’s recipes is that they’re never too precise!

I’ve read a few recipes that substitute the pine nuts for walnuts, cashews or almonds but, when it comes to pesto I’m a real purist. Have you tried any other variations? Let me know in the comments.

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