Michael’s Pistachio Pesto Sauce

This sauce is probably my signature dish, of sorts. I’ve been making it for a long time. It’s an uncooked concoction of classic Italy with a twist of my own. It’s the best pesto sauce I’ve ever eaten. Anywhere. A little goes a long way. You can use it as a sandwich spread, on hot pasta, and basically anywhere you use cheese or mayonnaise.

When served traditionally with pasta, the sauce should never be heated (or cooked). Let it reach room temperature in a covered container (or freshly made), spoon it onto hot pasta, toss to mix the two, and serve.

This will serve 12-16 people or more. A little sauce goes a long way.

Ingredients

  • 10 oz wedge of Parmesan cheese
  • 5 oz wedge of Romano cheese
  • 4 bundles of fresh basil
  • 3 garlic cloves
  • ½ pint heavy whipping cream
  • 4 tbs unsalted butter
  • 2 ½ ounces fresh spinach
  • 1 cup pistachios (shelled)
  • 1 ⅓ cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 tsp sea salt
  • black pepper to taste (10-15 grinds)
  • 1 cup cold water

Directions

  1. Grind cheese and pistachios in a food processor until the mixture has a coarse, sandy texture (30 seconds or so on pulse).
  2. Add butter and garlic. Grind until the mixture begins to clump and rise up onto the sides of the container.
  3. Add extra-virgin olive oil and heavy cream. Grind until blended.
  4. Add basil, spinach, salt, pepper, and water. Grind until blended. The sauce will have a whipped consistency and a light green color. Stop at this point.