Midday Pick Me Up with Coffee, Bread and Pesto | Food

Hey guys. Monday! Another week starts and I'm not really into it. I guess I'm still feeling the after effects of all the weekend f...

Midday Pick Me Up with Coffee, Bread and Pesto | Food
Hey guys. Monday! Another week starts and I'm not really into it. I guess I'm still feeling the after effects of all the weekend festivities. It was nothing really special, as me and friends just hung out watching the FIBA Asia finals between the Philippines and China. I will not get into the disappointing outcome of the game but suffice to say it was a good reason to get a little it hungover. *_*
Coffee, Bread, Cheese and Pesto
Science is definitely not on my side as it has been proven that the colder, rainy months (i.e Fall/Winter or the -Ber months) is "the sleepy season, thanks to the effect of diminishing daylight hours on your body. As the sun sets earlier and earlier each day, your levels of sleep-inducing melatonin begin rising sooner." I needed an afternoon snack to combat the sleepiness so I fixed myself a little meal. Usually, it's just coffee and a piece of toast but I did grocery shopping yesterday and they had some organic basil in stock so I made some basil pesto.
Old Town 3in1 White Coffee Hazelnut
Old Town 3in1 White Coffee Hazelnut
A rich fragrant Hazelnut flavored white coffee blend. Creamy, nutty and unique, it leaves a tantalizing taste.
Bonjour De France Tinned Brie Cheese
Bonjour De France Tinned Brie Cheese
Genuine French shelf stable Brie cheese with a soft and creamy texture. The brie Bonjour de France has mild flavor, fresh aroma is creamy and ideal to be enjoyed by the whole family. Its packaging is a small metal box, which guarantees its quality and freshness. Harmonizes well with jelly and a good dry white wine or light red. (source)
Herb Ciabiatta with Basil Pesto and Brie
Herb Ciabiatta with Basil Pesto and Brie
I also bought a pack of Herb Ciabiatta at the local bakery (Tinapayan). I though they would be perfect to pair with the basil pesto as spread.

Homemade Basil Pesto
Homemade Basil Pesto
I'm sharing this simple pesto recipe, in case you also want to make your own basil pesto at home. The ingredients are basic, easy to get and affordable. I get my basil at the local supermarket for less than Php 20  for 2 big handfuls. You can use any nuts (except peanuts) that you have onhand if you don't have pine nuts. I always try to get quality extra virgin olive oil as it's the base of a good pesto. It's usually priced at Php 150 for 250ml.

Pesto is more or less made to taste and beyond the basic ingredients and method, there is no correct or wrong way to do it. You can use what you have in your pantry and adjust the ingredients and seasoning according to your taste and preference.

Basic Basil Pesto Ingredients:
Fresh basil leaves, approximately 2 packed handfuls
Garlic, 2 cloves
*Pine nuts (1/4 cup)
Extra-virgin olive oil (2/3 cup)
Salt, to taste
Ground black pepper, to taste
**Grated Parmesan cheese (1/2 cup)

 *I used almonds as it was what I had at the moment
 **Omitted in my recipe

Combine basil, garlic and nuts in a food processor (I used a blender). Pulse until properly combined. You can add more garlic if you like. Personally, I use one clove per handful of basil. Add 1/2 cup of oil (EVOO) and process/mix until you get a smooth and creamy paste. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Pour in more oil and adjust until you are happy with the consistency and taste of your pesto. Pour in a layer of EVOO on top if you are storing it for later use. The oil prevents the pesto from oxidizing and turning brown.
Homemade Basil Pesto
Homemade Basil Pesto
If using immediately, you can add the cheese right away but if you want to freeze the pesto for later use, don't include the cheese as it doesn't freeze well.

I didn't add cheese to my pesto as I plan to use it at a later time for pasta and as a spread. Also, I feel like I can cut down on calories without the cheese. The resulting paste really smells divine and tastes delicious (I didn't really miss the cheese). It doesn't compare to the packaged pesto that you buy at the store (which is actually very expensive). This is really easy, simple and quick to do so you won't have any reason not to try making this at home. :)
Midday Pick Me Up with Coffee, Bread and Pesto
Midday Pick Me Up with Coffee, Bread and Pesto

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