Fresh Basil & Smoked Olive Oil Pesto

Fresh Basil & Smoked Olive Oil Pesto
Lauren Daley/Santa Rosa, Ca fan

2 cups fresh basil leaves, tightly packed
½ cup freshly grated Parmesan-Reggiano or Romano cheese
¼ cup Smoked Olive Oil
¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
1/3 cup pine nuts
3 medium sized garlic cloves, minced
Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste

Combine the basil in with the pine nuts and pulse a few time in a food processor or blender (you may use walnuts instead of pine nuts, just pulse them a few times first before adding the basil). Add the garlic and pulse a few times more.
Slowly add the olive oils in a constant stream while the food processor is on. Stop to scrape down the sides of the processor with a rubber spatula. Add the grated cheese and pulse again until blended. Add a pinch of salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste.

I used this pesto to make a pesto chicken pizza, using a whole wheat pre-baked shell; spread generously with pesto, cubed grilled chicken breast, jack cheese, parmesan, artichoke hearts, fresh basil and fresh corn kernels. Delicious!

Enjoy more recipes using Sonoma Smoked Olive Oil