Zhaba Zhournal
Tuesday, September 28, 2004 
I know, there are things that an entire bottle of white wine and homemade pesto can't cure; but those are things I don't have at the moment.

Weird, if not bad, day at work; f!cking enormous amounts of rain; threat of tornadoes (of which I have a phobia, and I don't care how little sense that makes); but I managed to catch a cab that dropped off someone else right in front of my office (and tipped the driver very well); and J. baked brownies, and had a bottle of wine in the fridge; and I made liberal use of the mute button during the evening news; and I watched the Daily Show; and then there were some CSI reruns and some New York Times crossword puzzles and...well, there was drinking. And homemade pesto, from the basil plant on the windowsill. And did I mention the drinking? Um, yeah, I did. Anyway. I'm fine. Quite fine. Thank you for asking.

In case you were wondering (which you weren't, but pretend you were), here are my ideal proportions for homemade pesto, which can be multiplied according to how much basil you have:
1/2 cup fresh basil leaves, stems removed
2 tbsp. pine nuts (or walnuts, or mixture)
1 large garlic clove, or two small*
1 1/2 to 2 tbsp. olive oil
2 tbsp. grated Parmesan or Romano cheese

Process basil, pine nuts, and garlic in blender or food processor. Add half of the oil while mixer is running. Add cheese and the other half of the oil and process. Voilà—you've got pesto.
The "1/2 cup of basil" proportions will make pesto for one, or for two who aren't really hungry. And if you're better at math than I am you can figure it out from there. (Especially if you remember that there are 4 tbsp. in 1/4 cup.)

I am, by the way, a pesto snob: as far as I'm concerned, there are exactly five ingredients in pesto, maybe six if you like walnuts. It's basil, pine nuts, garlic, olive oil, and Romano cheese; at the very most, there's walnuts and Parmesan cheese, in addition to/instead of the pine nuts and Romano. There's no room for salt, or canola oil, or parsley, or dried essence of milk curd, or whatever the hell else grocery-store-appropriate pesto makers put in their plastic containers. (And pesto in a pasteurized glass container is to be fled from. Especially if it's gray, or gray-green, or anything the J. Crew catalogue would call "loden"; and if it's drabber than the nearest bottle of green olives, it's clearly a science experiment to discover what Whitey will fall for.)

Woo-ee! Did I mention I've been drinking? (Yeah, I know, I did.)

Oh, and I finally got my old digital camera hooked up to my new(er) computer; and even got the pictures from my cousin's 2002 baby shower off of the camera. And I took some pictures of the bird, although they're a bit blurry, since parakeets move faster than old digital cameras do. But at least now I'm able to take pictures easily, and get them on the computer almost as easily. In fact, here's a picture, taken tonight, of the bird. (Click to enlarge, and to see the annotations I added in Photoshop.)

the bird
click for bigger image and annotations

And now I'd better post this and get the bird, and me, to bed. Dobranich...

*The amount of garlic depends on a) how much you like garlic, b) how big the cloves are, and c) how good the cloves are—one small clove of good, fresh, midsummer garlic is one thing; three cloves of midwinter storage garlic that you've had to cut the brown spots and the sprouts out of is another. Anyway, think of how much garlic you personally want, and multiply that by the number of people you're serving.

[ at 11:58 PM • by Abby • permalink  ]

Yes, that's me.


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