Meanwhile, I wanted to share this wonderful recipe for basil pesto with you. It's different from the one I posted here last year. This recipe uses no Parmesan, which I guess makes it vegan. It's just as delicious as the version with Parmesan. In fact, my husband likes it even more! I made this batch the other evening because my basil plants are so prolific right now and I didn't want any to go to waste. I'm afraid they won't fare well much longer in this heat.
Basil Pesto (no cheese)
1 cup pine nuts, toasted at 350 degrees for about 5 minutes
8 cups lightly packed fresh basil leaves
2 to 3 garlic cloves, chopped
2/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1) Bring 5 cups salted water to a boil. Add basil and quickly submerge leaves with a spoon. Immediately drain in a colander and rinse with cold water until cool, then pat basil dry with paper towels.
2) In a food processor, combine pine nuts, basil and garlic; season with coarse salt and freshly ground pepper. Process until nuts are finely chopped. With machine running, pour oil in a steady stream through feed tube. Process until smooth. Use immediately or freeze for up to six months.
To use from frozen: defrost pesto at room temperature or at 30-second intervals in the microwave. Mix well before using in recipes.
Lastly, I harvested our first cucumber of the year. It's the first time we've grown cucumbers and I've been very excited about it, checking the plant nearly every day for signs of fruit. All of a sudden this beauty popped out. The plant is taking over the side yard. My husband has built an intricate web of stakes and string to keep it off the ground.
I believe this has to be the most delicious cucumber I've ever tasted!