Making Pesto

We picked our first batch of basil from the garden tonight. My mother says the more you harvest, the more you get.

Thai basil (the purple-stalked type) volunteers in my garden now. That makes a nice, sharp pesto. But we picked the genovese basil tonight.

I asked Sam if he wanted to help make the pesto, since it’s about his favorite way to dress pasta. I said first, you have to pick all these leaves off the stems. I told him, “it’s kind of a job.”

He shot back, “I think that’s an easy job.”

And I remembered why the man can build computers over and over, and build sound sets for his old-school midi on Sibelius, and why other young adults like him can do the same exacting job over and over again

Daniel Shackleford, who’s about Sam’s age and moved from Krum to live at Marbridge in Austin, works at a hospital sterilizing medical equipment and packing it in bags. You can’t get bored and make mistakes at that kind of job. People would get sick. Daniel loves the exacting, repetitive nature of the work. The same kind of thing that would put me to sleep.

About 30 minutes later, Sam was ready to pulse the leaves with the rest of the ingredients: pine nuts, garlic, salt, olive oil. When I added the parmesean cheese and the butter, he complained about having to push the pulse button on the blender over and over.

“I thought this had an automatic pulse cycle,” he said.

Well, maybe not all the repetitive tasks ….

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