The other day, we were in search of Hawaiian shirts. Well, my son was, and I’m his driver, so I went along. He’s developed a recent obsession with the shirts and, I must admit, they suit him. Which isn’t to say I wanted to spend a fortune on Hawaiian shirts. So we headed to our favorite Goodwill.
He didn’t find the perfect shirt —or maybe changed his mind about his new look, I can’t know for sure —but something caught my eye. Right there on the shelf, amidst all the other small appliances, was a Cuisinart Little Pro Plus, the 3-cup version of my full-size food processor. And it was priced at just four dollars and seventy-five cents!
For those of you who love a food processor, you know that Cuisinart surpasses all others. After burning out the motors of several lesser appliances, I got my larger Cuisinart about 12 years ago, and it still chops, purees, and mixes like a champ. I’ve wanted the smaller one for a while, but didn’t want to spend the money. Surely, I thought, this one doesn’t work. No one would give up such a powerful machine if there wasn’t something very, very wrong. Like, um, it didn’t work.
One of the ladies at the cash register directed me to an outlet where I could test it. I held my breath as I lowered the button to “pulse…”
That familiar noise was thrilling. Y’all, I scored a Cuisinart Little Pro Plus for less than five bucks!
I couldn’t wait to get home and make pesto. My own basil crop has been light this year, but Rosewood Market sells fresh basil in bulk —not as cheap as growing your own, but much less expensive than those plastic boxes of herbs at every other grocery store in town. Maybe you pay more for the plastic box, which really isn’t good for anything.
The Italian “pestare”means “to crush or mash.”So “pesto” means “crushed.”And a food processor can crush the heck out of some basil, in mere seconds. Add basil, garlic, pine nuts (or any other kind of nuts, or no nuts), salt, and pepper to the bowl and give it a whirl. Add parmesan if you like. When everything is sufficiently crushed, drizzle a little olive oil into the bowl, pulsing the processor just until blended. I pickle my own jalapeños, and like to toss a few of those in the bowl, too.
Not only does the motor work, the blade is as sharp as a brand new one. Hooray for summer pesto, and double hooray for a great deal!