Chili Basil Pesto
Pesto, where would we be without this standby for pasta, bruschette and more? This basil pesto had a bite to it with added fresh chilis. Makes around 300g jar
Recipe type: Condiments & Sauces
Cuisine: Italian / Mediterranean
  • 3 large handfuls of fresh basil leavesprint button transparent
  • 2 medium, red chilis
  • 100gm pine nuts (quality ones, with no black ends)
  • 180ml extra virgin olive oil, best quality
  • pinch sea salt and a twist of freshly-milled black pepper
  • Parmesan to sprinkle on your pesto dish after
  • a few stripes of chili to garnish
  1. Wash and spin or pat gently dry the fresh basil. Remove the leaves and place in a food processor.
  2. Wash and split the chilis to remove the seeds. Chop roughly and add to the processor bowl.
  3. Place pine nuts in the processor and then blitz up pulsing to begin with, then on speed one and two, until the the mix is in small bread crumb size.
  4. Turn on the blender or processor again, on speed one, and drizzle the oil in through the top opening in the lid, slowly and steadily, until the pesto is runny but not too liquid. You may not need all the olive oil. The required consistency depends on what you intend to use the pesto for – dips and spreading need thicker pesto, dough and basting need runnier pesto. See list of uses above for ideas.
  5. Place in sterilised lidded jars and keep in the fridge (ideally use within a week) or freeze in ice cube trays, then bag up and keep frozen ready to defrost the pesto in small amounts as required.
Recipe by The Red Bistro at