2016-Mar-18, Friday

atomdrache: Likeshine drew the good part.  I made the awful background. (Default)
The following instructions are intended for an avian audience, but are easily adapted to chefs of other morphologies. If for whatever reason you are not a bird, I am sure you can make the necessary adjustments, as long as you can operate a knife and a mortar and pestle, and as long as you can peck things.

I have not specified exact quantities because I believe proportion is more important, and I shall specify proportions only loosely because I simply can't be arsed because I expect you to adjust them to your liking. It's pesto, not the total synthesis of cyanocobalamin.


  • Ingredients:
    • Pine nuts (cashews work fine too)

    • Basil (bunch, fresh)

    • Garlic (a few cloves)

    • Nutritional yeast

    • Maggi seasoning (or other salty savory fermented brown stuff, e.g. soy sauce, yeast extract, miso, or doenjang)

    • Olive oil

  • Apparatus:
    • Mortar and pestle

    • Cutting board

    • Knife

That was close. I almost had to rewrite the ingredients and apparatus sections because, despite [personal profile] premchaia_pre4's repeated suggestions that I adopt M-backspace in place of it, I am very strongly habituated to erasing the previous word with C-w, which unfortunately is also "close tab" in some browsers.


I will assume you have washed your basil, as well as your feet. You should prepare food with clean talons, and you should preen beforehand to reduce the likelihood of shedding loose down feathers into the mortar (note the absence of feathers from the list above.)

Start with the nuts. Pour a nice little mound of them into the mortar. They'll end up being about half the volume of the finished pesto. Pound them to the desired consistency. Sprinkle liberally with nutritional yeast, dribble enough Maggi (or soy sauce) to wet the nutritional yeast flakes into a paste, add a little olive oil, and then mix that into the mashed nuts.

Next, peel a few cloves of garlic. Don't be shy. It's delicious. Mince them on the cutting board, then transfer them to the mortar. Next, do the same with the basil. The basil should make up at least half the volume of what goes into the mortar--don't be afraid to use lots of it! Basil is a magnificent herb. And it's fine if you use the stems. They're not very hard. Just mince them well.

Now mash that all together and give it a good pounding until it's well-mixed and the garlic, basil, and previously-mashed nuts have achieved the preferred texture. It needn't be a sauce--it's fine if it's chunky.

And it's done.

At this point, feel free to spread it on bread or to tear off chunks of bread with your beak and rub them around in it. If you're serving it to other people, you might want to transfer it from the mortar to a serving dish; however, if there are no witnesses, then feel free to use the mortar as a serving dish. I'm certainly in no position to judge you.


atomdrache: Likeshine drew the good part.  I made the awful background. (Default)

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