Pistou, refers to the use of a mortal and pestle, yielding a superior texture and taste than that of a food processor.
5 large garlic cloves (or less, if you're garlic shy)
pinch of coarse salt
2 cups packed fresh basis leaves (preferably small-leaf basil), washed thoroughly and spun dry
1/2 cup freshly shredded Parmigiano-Reggiano
1/3 cup Provençal extra-virgin olive oil
1. Place the garlic and coarse salt in a mortar and pestle, and pound vigorously to a paste.
2. Add the basil gradually and pound to a dark green paste.
3. Add the cheese in 4 batches, and pound to the consistency of soft butter.
4. Gradually beat in the oil until sauce has the consistency of coarse mayonnaise. (Alternately, this can be made in a blender or food processor.)
5. Pass pistou at the table as an accompaniment to soupe au pistou.
Pistou, refers to the use of a mortal and pestle, yielding a superior texture and taste than that of a food processor. Pistou can also be made with Gruyere, Roquefort or goat cheese. Fabulous added to soups or stews, and as a sauce for pasta. Makes about 1 cup