Friday, February 17, 2017

Is it Me, or Is It Pesto?

I can't be the only person on the planet who does NOT like pesto.

Pesto is:

- crushed basil leaves
- crushed pine nuts
- garlic
- Parmesan cheese
- Olive oil

Mix and serve on bread or as a sauce for pasta.

What's not to like, you say?  First and last, it's the smell.  When I eat pesto, mercifully, my taste buds dull pretty quickly, but the scent lingers and leaves me a tad nauseous. I like basil. I like garlic. I like Parmesan cheese and olive oil.  It must be the pine nuts. They are the tiny, edible (they say) seeds of the female cones of pine trees grown in Canada and Siberia--yes, those cold countries!

Would you eat a pine cone?

Apparently these seeds are expensive.

Pine nuts are high calorie--100 grams of dry kernels = 675 calories. They are reputedly nutritional perfection, rich in Omega 3 fats, Vitamin E in abundance, B complex, magnesium, calcium, zinc, potassium, yadda yadda yadda...  I DON'T CARE!

The taste is described by others as sweet, buttery, subtle, delicious, but is none of those things to me. I've heard people say the scent of pesto brings to mind wandering in a forest. This is not the smell of a pine tree at Christmas. It's a strange forest of alien-scented flora and is what I imagine the Aokigahara Forest in Japan smells like--the forest where people go to commit suicide.  Let's just say I would prefer not to be lost in a forest that smells of pesto.

Even the word 'pesto' sounds like Italian for 'pest'. I won't go into the look because I stumbled upon a reviewer I've linked below who did a fine job describing the look and conveys my feelings perfectly.  This fortunate reviewer has not tasted pesto, so you are getting a description of the other senses.

I say, bring on the Marinara, the Carbonara, Pomodoro, Alfredo, Bolognese, Vodka, Puttanesca and Marsala!  Pesto? Forget about it!



  1. Oh my. What a pity! I do admit one can easily have too much of a good thing where pesto is concerned, but a little on good pasta works for me. But I like pine nuts, too. Great sprinkled on a salad. Odd how tastes are so different!

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    2. To each her own, but...shudder...!