Categories: Food+DrinkRecipes

Basil, Hazelnut and Ricotta Pesto

At Nostrana in Portland, chef Cathy Whims adds hazelnuts to bring an Oregonian flair to her pesto sauce, rich with Parmesan cheese, basil and extra virgin olive oil. Whims, who was a finalist this year for the prestigious James Beard Award for the best chef in the Northwest, said the hazelnut adds a lightly toasted nut flavor to her rustic Italian cuisine.

“I like cooking with hazelnuts because they are such great local treasure,” says Whims. “Also they are a highly prized nut from my favorite region of Italy—Piemonte. They find their way into many traditional Piemontese dishes here at Nostrana such as Brutti e Buoni cookies (‘ugly and good’ hazelnut meringues); gianduja gelato (chocolate hazelnut); and salsa verde, a green nut sauce.”

This recipe is a wonderful room-temperature sauce for salmon, halibut, tuna, chicken breasts and, of course, fettuccine and potato gnocchi.

Ingredients:

2 cloves garlic, peeled

2 cups basil leaves, tightly packed

½ cup extra virgin olive oil

¼ cup hazelnuts lightly toasted and skins off

½ cup freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano

3 tablespoons fresh ricotta cheese (preferably sheep’s milk)

2 tablespoons butter at room temperature

Directions:

Finely chop hazelnuts. In a mortar and pestle, crush garlic to a puree with a pinch of salt. Add to a food processor along with basil. Pulse on and off until basil is chopped, then let run while pouring olive oil through the feed tube. Remove from processor to a bowl, fold in Parmigiano, ricotta and butter and season with salt.

Share
Published by
admin

Recent Posts

Home + Design Trending

Connect to the local & regional market with our Home + Design Issue! DURING THESE…

3 weeks ago

Last-minute Local and Sustainable Father’s Day Gifts from the PNW

Father's Day gifts from the PNW—sustainable, local and well made.

2 months ago

Sign Up for Adventure

Subscribe get more trip, recipe, nesting ideas from us!  

4 months ago

An easy homemade upgrade to your Marinara

1859's Home Grown Chef Thor Erickson shares the secret to a gourmet alternative to marinara…

4 months ago

PNW Businesses Rush to Aid in the Battle Against COVID-19

Across the region, theater companies are making masks, distillers are bottling hand sanitizer, restaurants are…

4 months ago

Chanterelle Mushroom Compound Butter

Home Grown Chef Thor Erickson | photography by Charlotte Dupont Thud, thud, thud! The knock…

5 months ago