The word pesto comes from the verb meaning “to crush or pound” because the traditional method of preparing sauces in Italy was by using the mortar and pestle. So pesto is used for any sauce that is made with a mortar, like the more popular pesto alla Genovese.
In southern Italy, with the abundance of almonds and lemons that are grown every year, a common pesto uses these ingredients and we love to make it.
Hi, my name is Alessandra Lauria, I am a Sicilian pasta maker expert, a dinner party host, and creator and founder of The Pasta Studio - an online (and offline) pasta school. As my roots are Sicilian, I tend to share what’s locally delicious to me. Hope you will enjoy it as much as I do!
As with all pestos, using the mortar for this Almond & Lemon Pesto enhances the flavors from the fresh ingredients while making sure all the nutritional values are not lost. This pesto is very quick to make as it uses only a few ingredients and you only need a small quantity for many people to eat from it.
In this recipe, please pre-grate the parmesan as it is easier when adding it to the mortar before starting the process.
As always, start with the drier and solid ingredients before adding the veggies and the Extra Virgin Olive Oil. However, with this pesto sauce, it is a good idea to add a bit of olive oil when crushing the almonds and a tbsp of water.