Romance Cooks

Basil Pesto – Tracey Sorel

My first experience in tasting a pesto dish was at a lovely little place called the Doylestown Inn in Doylestown PA way back in the 1980’s. I ordered spinach ravioli with pesto sauce and thought it was the best thing I’d ever tasted and in my culinary inexperience at the time.  Years later I’ve mastered the art of Pesto sauce. This can be used over pasta or as a coating for fish, chicken and a general all around marinade. You should experiment with different types of greens.

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Basil Pesto

This makes about 1 ½ cup


2 cups packed fresh basil leaves

2 cloves garlic

1/4 cup pine nuts, almonds, or walnuts work just fine

2/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste

1/2 cup freshly grated Pecorino cheese, or Parmesan


Combine the basil, garlic, and pine nuts in a food processor and pulse until coarsely chopped. Add the oil and process until fully incorporated and smooth. Season with salt and pepper. You can also freeze this mixture, just divide into ice cube trays and cover with plastic wrap then freeze. Once frozen pop the cubes into a zip-loc freezer bag. It will keep for up to six months. When ready to use take out the right amount of cubes roughly 1-2 for 1lb of pasta. You can either unthaw in the microwave or stir into hot pasta.



The summertime in Northern California is known of its hot, dry weather. Beth Chadwick should know since she’s been going through a bit of a dry spell herself. Her marriage is falling apart. She knows exactly how many pairs of black socks her husband owns, and how much starch he likes in his shirts, so when she matches the lipstick stain on his collar to the shade on his secretary’s lips she knows he’s a cheating bastard.

She has her friends to keep her together. Her best friend Madge is hoping to close the circle on her open marriage. Joyce, the devout Catholic, thinks her daughter might be practicing witchcraft, the widow Samantha is caught in the middle of a real triple-decker of the sandwich generation and Kathy may have uncovered a corpse in her front yard.

These women really get Beth’s need for a new life. But, how is she going to get past her stand-by-you-man mother, and her I’ll do anything if you just take me back soon to be ex-husband? Can their problems be solved over a few glasses of wine? And then there’s the matter of the hot photographer camping out in her backyard.

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