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pistou 005To heighten the flavors of the vegetable soup I served at dinner last night, I made a simple pistou.  As I had mentioned in yesterday’s post, pistou hails from France and is used to flavor soups, typically a vegetable and bean soup.  You’ll also note that traditional pistou is no more than fresh basil, garlic and olive oil, ground down into a paste with a mortar and pestle.  It’s robust, but simple.  What could be more simple than 3 ingredients? 

In my recipe, I added Parmagiano-Reggiano cheese (also found in pesto) and of course, you’ll want to season with salt and pepper.  As a time saver, I used my food processor but I applaud those of you that plan to use a mortar and pestle.


1 cup fresh basil, packed

1 clove garlic

1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil

1/4 cup Parmagiano-Reggiano cheese, freshly grated

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper


Combine basil, garlic and cheese in bowl of a food processor.  Slowly add oil until paste forms.  Adjust oil consistency by adding more if needed.  Season with salt and pepper.