Inner Chef

Enjoy your kitchen, your food and your inner chef

Basil Recipes

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Basil-Arugula Pesto                                        Makes: About ½ cup

(This sauce can be used on beef, pork, chicken, seafood and veggies)

1 ½ cups loosely packed baby arugula

½ cup loosely packed basil leaves

2 Tbsp. roughly chopped toasted walnuts

1 garlic clove

½ tsp. finely grated lemon zest

¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil

Kosher salt

Ground black pepper

In a food processor or blender combine the arugula, basil, walnuts, garlic, and lemon zest and pulse until coarsely chopped. With the machine running, gradually add the oil and process until well blended. Season with salt and pepper.



Basil Vinaigrette                                              Makes: About 2/3 cup

(This dressing can be used with beef, pork, chicken, seafood and veggies)

½ cup loosely packed fresh basil leaves

¼ cup loosely packed fresh Italian parsley (leaves and tender stems)

1 Tbsp. fresh lemon juice

1 Tbsp. red wine vinegar

1 small clove, minced

1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil

½ tsp. Kosher salt

¼ tsp. ground black pepper


In a food processor or blender pulse the basil, parsley, lemon juice, vinegar, and garlic until coarsely chopped. With the machine running, slowly add the oil. Transfer to a small bowl and season with salt and pepper.


Baked White Fish with Pine Nut, Parmesan, and Basil Pesto Crust

(Makes 2 servings, but recipe can be doubled or tripled)


2 white fish fillets, about 6 oz. each (halibut, cod, tilapia, grouper, or any mild white fish)

3 Tbsp. pine nuts

2 Tbsp. Parmesan Cheese

¼ tsp. finely minced garlic (1 garlic clove)

1 tsp. basil pesto (I used purchased pesto)

1 ½ Tbsp. mayo (use regular or light mayo, not fat-free)



1. Preheat oven or toaster oven to 400F/200C. Spray individual casserole dishes with non-stick spray or olive oil (use one large casserole dish if you don’t have individual ones.) Remove the fish fillets from the refrigerator and let them come to room temperature while the oven reheats. (Having the fish at room temperature is very important or it won’t cook before the crust topping gets too brown.)

2. Use a large chef’s knife to finely chop the pine nuts and mince the garlic. Mix together chopped pine nuts, Parmesan cheese, minced garlic, basil pesto, and mayo.

3. Use a rubber scraper to spread the crust mixture evenly over the surface of each fish fillet. Pile it on so all the crust mixture is used.

4. Bake fish 10-15 minutes, until fish is firm to the touch and crust mixture is starting to lightly browned. Serve hot.


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