If there’s one pesto recipe to save, it’s this one. You can use it as a starting point for your own basil pesto, adjusting quantities to suit your taste, or apply the proportions to improvise with other herbs, nuts, and cheeses.
Blend pine nuts, Parmesan, garlic, lemon zest, salt, and pepper (if using) in food processor until finely chopped. Add basil, and blend 1 minute, or until finely chopped, scraping down sides of bowl once or twice. With motor running, add oil in steady stream, and process until smooth.