Basil Pesto

Fresh basil, high quality olive oil, and delicious pine nuts are the basis for a truly good pesto. Add some cheese and it's just the thing for hot pasta.

Pesto Party Basil
Basil pesto pasta recipe
Basil pesto pasta!


  • 1 tablespoon of olive oil
  • 1 small onion chopped finely
  • 1 clove of garlic, minced
  • 2 tablespoons of all-purpose flour
  • 2 cups of chicken stock
  • 3 ripe tomatoes from your garden, peeled and quartered
  • ½ tsp of salt
  • freshly ground pepper to taste
  • ½ tsp of sugar
  • 3 fresh basil leaves chopped finely
  • 1 cup milk


  • Sour Cream
  • Basil leaves or flowers


  • In a large saucepan, sauté onion and garlic in olive oil for 2 to 3 minutes until onion is transparent.
  • Add flour, stirring constantly for 1 minute over medium heat. Pour in stock and heat until boiling, stirring well. Add tomatoes, salt, pepper, sugar and basil leaves. Allow soup to come back to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer for 30 to 40 minutes.
  • Take soup and place in a blender or food processor. Puree until broth is smooth and return to saucepan. Add milk and heat soup – do not boil.
  • Serve soup in bowls with a dollop of sour cream and a basil leaf or flower in the center.

Recipe from P. Allen Smith’s Veggies & Herbs card collection, featuring 27 of Smith’s favorite herbs and vegetables, as well as corresponding recipes for a true garden-to-table experience. Browse this and other P. Allen Smith books and publications at

P. Allen Smith