Classic Pesto with Pacific Coast Flake Salt

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I bought a mortar and pestle exclusively to make pesto, but this is reserved only for family, as it is indeed more work. This method delivers the most fragrant and luscious pesto. I use the food processor to make large batches of pesto.


2 cloves garlic
3 ounces fresh basil leaves
2 tablespoons pine nuts
2 tablespoons Parmigiano Reggiano cheese, grated
2 tablespoons Pecorino Romano cheese, grated
3/4 cup extra olive oil

Recipe Info

Difficulty Level: 
Prep Time: 
15 minutes
Total Time: 
15 minutes
Serving size: 


Using a food processor:
1. Combine garlic, Pacific Coast Flake Salt, pine nuts and basil leaves in a food processor and process until very finely minced.
2. With the machine running slowly dribble in the oil and process until the mixture is smooth.
3. Add the cheeses and process very briefly, just long enough to combine.
Using a mortar and pestle:
1. Add the garlic and Pacific Coast Flake Salt and grind to a paste.
2. Add pine nuts and continue to crush with pestle, smashing and grinding until a beige paste forms.
3. Add in the basil leaves to the mortar in thirds. Pound, grind and smash until leaves are into small pieces. Repeat with remaining basil leaves.
4. Add in cheeses, then slowly drizzle in olive oil, working to emulsify pesto into a smooth, creamy sauce.
Both methods can be served immediately with pasta or stored in the refrigerator with with a layer of olive oil.


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Recipe Tip:
Walnuts can be substituted for pine nuts. If you cannot find Pecorino Romano, substitute with Parmigiano Reggiano.

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