The Pesto Project

There is one thing that I love more than most things. In fact, I can rarely resist it. ‘What can it be?’ I hear you cry.


Just think about it: basil, parmesan, garlic, pine nuts, olive oil. All great things put together to create something amazing.

I love the salty, savoury flavour from the parmesan, combined with the tangy garlic and basil. I love the oily texture with a slight crunch and sweetness of the pine nuts. And it’s not just the flavour and texture: pesto is so versatile. Yes, it’s the easiest and most satisfying pasta sauce. But it’s also superb on salmon, in a quiche, as a dip, even – dare I say it – in a sandwich.

I love pesto.

Don't you want some?

So here’s my confession. Until now, I had never ever tried to make my own pesto. Despite being a complete pesto enthusiast and only really going for the fresh supermarket pesto (not the stuff in the jars), I hadn’t put the effort in to make my favourite weakness.

I recently acquired a food processor, and the first thing I made was pesto. A little nervous, I thought I’d just do enough for a pasta topping for two. I grabbed some basil (already had everything else), whizzed it with the garlic, pine nuts and olive oil, and hey pesto! (had to be done)

Hey Pesto!

Look at it… So tasty, so irresistible… I’m so pleased that the pine nuts didn’t get completely obliterated by the food processor and stayed lovely and crunchy. As always, I completely made up the quantities and added as much as I liked. I’ll probably think a bit more about it next time, especially if I make a bigger batch (for prolonged pesto enjoyment).

It’s so much fresher when you make it yourself. Not blended to a pulp – chunky, tasty. You can literally see where it came from. You can see the ingredients. And, most importantly, you can taste them. Yummmmmmm.

Don't worry, it's wheat-free pasta

I made just enough for two. And yes, I did add more parmesan on top. That is how I roll.

And now I’m so excited about making different kinds of pesto… With rocket, spinach, sun dried tomatoes. You name it, I’ll put it in pesto. Within reason. (Please don’t challenge me on this.)

Ok, I feel like I have suitably expressed my love of pesto. Goodbye.


August 31, 2010. Food projects. Leave a comment.

The first thought project

So, on Sunday I blogged about baking. That was totally fun. I’m going to do that again. Like, in about a week.

And I’ve got this other plan, too. I also make real proper dinner, and I’m going to blog about that, like, once a week.

AND I also make stuff from time to time. You know, cards and knitted stuff and craft stuff and stupid stuff. And I’m going to blog about that. Like, once a week.

Then. You’re never going to believe this. I also think about stuff. And I’m going to fill the space between the baking and the dinner and the making with my thoughts about the waking moments. About the things that we all have in common, the things that make us stand apart. The things I enjoy, that other people enjoy. The things I do and think and feel.

I don’t know about you but I do actually find it quite difficult to figure out what I think and feel. Sometimes it’s just habit or something that someone else does that I’m hanging on to. Well. No more. It’s time, at the age of 23, that I plunge into the depths of my own brain and body.

Hope you stick around to see what I find.

August 24, 2010. Tags: , , , , . Thought projects. Leave a comment.

The first Sunday bake project

Ok, first of all. I did start baking on Saturday but that was only to get a headstart.

I started with a desire for something chocolately after dinner. I knew I had butter, cocoa, sugar and milk. And, of course, some wheat-free flour mix. That’s right. All baking is wheat-free.

There are a couple of things. I don’t really measure things exactly. And I quite like that. Ok, if I was making a birthday cake for someone, or if I didn’t know what I was doing, I’d measure stuff out. But I like making it up as I go along!

I also didn’t have any icing sugar. So those funny-looking yellow ones are made with caster sugar. A bit crunchy. So this morning I went out and got some more icing sugar and made some butter icing with a hint of orange. With the chocolate cake base, I think it works quite well.

So join me in a cupcake to celebrate the first bake project of The Jenny Project!

August 22, 2010. Tags: , , , . Bake projects. Leave a comment.

Every journey begins with a single step

So. Here I am, just getting on with things, and a thought occurs to me. Then it starts plaguing me. The thought is this:

‘What do I actually like doing?’

It’s a tough question. When you spend your life going from one moment, one day, one year to the next, the answer can pass you by. But then I think, ‘I like doing loads of stuff,’ and that’s true. But which bits specifically? sometimes I like doing nothing. Sometimes it’s about just being.

But I would like to record this doing and being in the form of a project that is just about things that I like.

I’m going to be recording the things I do, things I make and things I think about in a nice blog.

It’s going to be fun!

The first project is coming soon!

August 21, 2010. Tags: , , , . creative, Jenny project, life, Thought projects. Leave a comment.