Place the basil leaves, pine nuts, garlic (if using), and a pinch of salt in the bowl of a food processor fitted with a blade attachment. Process for about 5 or 6 (1-second) pulses. Add the grated cheeses and process for another 5 or 6 (1-second) pulses. With the motor running, add the oil in a slow, steady stream and process until the mixture’s smooth. Taste the pesto and season with salt and pepper.
This episode of My Go-To Dish features Emilia Terragni, editorial director at Phaidon Press in London. Terragni was responsible for the first English translation of the renowned Italian cookbook The Silver Spoon. To make this simple pesto sauce, see the recipe here.
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