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Probiotic Pesto Mortaio e Pestello | Recipeish | Gustus Vitae

  • Yield: Around 1/3rd cups
  • Time Estimate: around 10 minutes.
  • Storage Notes: Will keep for up to a week in a refrigerated Tupperware container.
  • Difficulty: This will tire your arm out for sure.

Yes, it's a pain compared with the ease of a food processor, but it's kinda like re-heating pizza in the microwave vs. hitting with the broiler for 3 minutes - it's not that much more time and the result is loads better. Grinding this down in the semi-porous stone gets you both a texture and a flavor that you can't wring out of a blender or food processor - simultaneously textured and creamy, and with a garlic kick that's almost spicy in it's boldness; just thing to have in the fridge for an easy and delicious weeknight pasta or to marinate chops, wings, and drumsticks in.



  • 4 oz fresh basil, including water weight from rinsing.
  • 1 oz pine nuts. 0.5 oz of walnuts will do in a pinch, too.
  • 1 tbs Probiotic Ocean Salt.
  • 2 tbs light extra virgin olive oil.
  • 2 oz pecorino romano. It's got a shaper taste than parmesan, but the latter will do just fine too.
  • 5 cloves garlic.

  • For this recipe, you're going to want a large-ish mortar & pestle. Mexican grocers, if one's nearby, carry these for under $12.00, and it's a a useful and handsome tool to have in the kitchen.
  • Start with the garlic and salt, mashing repeatedly, until they combine to form a sort of cream - you'll know it when you have it.
  • Add in pine nuts, breaking them down to combine and release their fat.
  • Rinse and spin/pat dry basil leaves. Add them a small handful at at time - we go around 3-4 batches for all 3 oz.
  • Finely grate cheese, adding in bit by bit and not fully incorporating as you have with the other ingredients.
  • Drizzle in olive oil and - to taste, if you think it needs it - a bit extra Probiotic Salt.
  • Transfer to a small container and refrigerate - future you will be glad you took the time to make this right.