Russo's Basil for Pesto
Yesterday we got basil at Russo's and I'm doing a big pesto batch. Probably most of you don't need this info, but just in case there's a newbie Pesto maker out there, trying to match apples for apples in a recipe:
If you buy your basil at Russo's soon, you'd likely get these results:
6 bunches basil ($2@)= 1 lb 2 ou.leaves* = 16 cups basil leaves, compacted but not super compacted.
* that's 1 lb 2 ou. net from 1 lb 9 ou. gross which includes the major stems.
(After a lifetime of cuisinarting the pesto, I am trying mortar and pestle this time.whew, lots of muscle power required. About now i'm wondering if anyone has found it not worth it....)
Always gone the food processor route myself, but I have to ask - how big is your mortar??? 16 cups of leaves is a lot.
These days I get my basil at my CSA (love the times they tell us to pull entire plants!). Before that, I used to go to Wilson's for basil in season. You get an entire plant, with the roots, which makes it easy to keep it fresh for a bit before you get to pesto production. More important, it always seems a lot more pungent (probably because it is fresher) than the basil at Russo's. Of course this is an option only briefly, during summer!