Answers from Our Experts (1)
The best thing to bring home from the Italian Riviera is pesto. This sauce known all over the world hails from here, precisely in Genoa, and you should buy at least one jar to bring home. Mainly used as a pasta sauce, the traditional recipe uses basil leaves designated with the DOP trademark, pine nuts, olive oil, garlic, salt, grana and pecorino cheeses. Ask for pesto made the artisanal way, where the ingredients are ground with a wooden pestle in a marble mortar, rather than the one produced industrially which uses a mixer. When using the mixer, the ingredients are thrown in together, and the olive oil is added at the end. When using the pestle and mortar, the correct procedure is to put in and grind the garlic and the pine nuts with salt first, then the basil leaves, then the grated cheeses and finally the olive oil. This is the way to obtain pesto’s correct flavor and texture.