Almond Parmesan Pesto

Farmers Markets in New York City are entirely full of charm, of story, culture, accents, smells, freshest ingredients, homemade this, homegrown that.  I watched a film recently in which the chef decided/created/imagined his dishes while at the market.  Collecting and gathering ingredient combinations he wouldn’t have invented otherwise.  A plethora of options, colors, smells, and flavors.
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Locally, on Saturdays we have a farmers market on the corner edge of our neighborhood park.  Whilst taking a stroll through, scanning the crowds, booths, produce, and flowers… I had not planned on buying anything, since we were on our way to Manhattan.  But as I walked past the basil, I could. not. resist. The fragrance exceptional, even nostalgic. Spicy, smooth, sharp.
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With Scott, our brother-in-law, visiting us in Brooklyn, it was a combined effort to take these pretty greens home and put them to use.  You see, Scott happens to be exceptional at food prep – specifically chopping, and the proper use of knives in the kitchen.
Let me tell you, it is an extremely useful skill to have!  I just learned 3 very basic (and fun!) chopping techniques from him.  Rock-chop, tap-chop, and cross-chop.  We had so much fun making basil together!

fresh basil
fresh parmesan cheese
slivered almonds
olive oil

*no measurements for this one, guys – chop and add until you’re satisfied! if you’re ingredients are fresh, you can’t screw this one up.

I used “cross-chop” for the entire recipe. (Scott, *my hand model* showed me this youtube to learn the chop techniques)

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Start with plucking a big handful of basil leaves. Cross-chop it up. The longer you go, the finer it’ll get.
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Drizzle in some olive oil.

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Grab a handful of fresh parmesan and slivered almonds – cross chop like it’s your job.
I wish it WAS my job!

Pour in more olive oil and a pinch of salt and pepper.
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Mix it up and toss with pasta, or spread it on a sandwich. Can’t go wrong – I even just dipped crackers in this stuff. Tasted amazing.
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A very special thanks to Scott, the knife expert, knowledge enthusiast, avid reader, frisbee-ist (that a word?), genius airplane pilot, who is well seasoned in physics and american history, and ALWAYS learning something new on purpose. You inspire me!

from my Tiny Kitchen,


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