If making basil pesto is a rite of summer for you, you’ll want to check out my most recent stories on Zester Daily and NPR radio about the disappearing pine nut and substituting pistachios for pesto instead. As our planet warms, we’re losing our pine forests. Everyone I spoke to, from the American pine nut gatherers in the southwest dustbowl, to the pesto makers in Genoa who have relied on the Mediterranean fir forests for centuries, said the same thing: the nut-bearing conifers are an endangered species.
It was a tough story to digest, but digest it I did. Because I write about food rather than politics, I can offer a promising subtext, When Life Hands You Plagues, Make Pistachio Pesto.
If you’ve read about my earlier adventures in Sicily with pistachio pesto, and tried the recipe, have a look at the new recipe in Zester Daily. I’ve revised it for a more brightly colored, but equally delicious version (in short, blanch and shock the basil before making the pesto).