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Old 09-11-2006, 09:10 PM   #1
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HELP: Pesto issue...or food processor issue? You decide.

Whenever I try to make this pesto recipe, my blender just whirls and whirls...no blending. So I keep adding more olve oil, stirring, olive oil...stir...etc. In the end I get puddles of oil on the surface of the beautiful green goop that none in my family will eat (more for me then!). I need to be able to control the consistancy better.

1/4 cup pine nuts
3 medium garlic cloves
1/4 to 1/2 cup olive oil
1/3 cup grated or shredded parmesan cheese
2 cups fresh packed basil leaves
pinch of salt
pinch of pepper

1. Chop the nuts and place them in a blender. Peel the garlic, cut into a few peices, and place in the blender.
2. Add 1/4 cup of the olive oil to the blender. Blend until fairly smooth (this does not happen for me).
3. Add cheese and basil. Blend until they are incorporated into the sauce. (this does not happen)

Seems like it should be pretty simple. Is there a way to do this by hand?


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Old 09-11-2006, 09:12 PM   #2
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How big is your food processor's bowl?

A hand blender, such as a KitchenAid, will do a superb job.

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Old 09-11-2006, 09:20 PM   #3
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Try first whipping the basil leaves and oil alone. When they become gooey, add the other ingredients. Works for me every time. I also use the handheld food mixer like Fryboy (mine is Braun). It's great!!
If I were you I would hold the salt, too... Parmigiano provides good amount of salt, then pasta will be cooked in salted water. I never add any salt to my pesto.
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Old 09-11-2006, 09:21 PM   #4
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You're using a blender, not a food processor, right? You used both appliance names.

If you have a FP, use that and drizzle the oil into the pureed basil, nuts and garlic. Then hand mix in the cheese.

If you have a blender, you need to do small batches because of the blade and container shape. Blenders are really best with a lot of liquid.
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Old 09-11-2006, 09:33 PM   #5
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Yeah, blender. Not sure why I fumbled that up. Thanks for the help guys!
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Old 09-12-2006, 04:42 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by primus diddy
Is there a way to do this by hand?
You can do the traditional method via mortar & pestle, especially if it's just a small batch. It will take time and energy though.

Best really is the FP, not blender.
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Old 09-12-2006, 04:51 AM   #7
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It will take time and energy though
But not much!..its how we do it! The trick is to maske sure you have a good heavy pestle and morter. I like ceramic because I think it helps with the grinding process, being less smooth than marble or granite.

But then, I only make enough for two people, so Chopstix is probablly right. If you want to try though, its not too hard.
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Old 09-12-2006, 06:06 AM   #8
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I've had personal experience with this. The first times I made pesto, I did not own a food processor, so I used a blender. I ended up causing smoke to drift out of the motor area of my blender. My conclusion was that I was trying to make too big a batch of pesto in my blender. I then purchased my first ever food processor and have had no problems making large batches of pesto.

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