Creamy Basil-Pesto Dip

For families with children, tuck in a list of babysitters and phone numbers (check with them first to make sure they want to be included) and a recreation center bulletin. Add a jug of sweet tea and plastic cups to make this gift over-the-top great.


Makes about 1 1/3 cups

Recipe from

Southern Living

Recipe Time

Prep: 15 Minutes
Cook: 5 Minutes
Chill: 1 Hours


2 tablespoons pine nuts
2 cups loosely packed fresh basil leaves
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1/2 cup sour cream
1 garlic clove, chopped
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1 teaspoon sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup olive oil
Fried chicken strips or hot wings, cherry tomatoes, crispy breadsticks
Garnish: fresh basil sprig


Heat pine nuts in a small nonstick skillet over medium-low heat, stirring often, 3 to 5 minutes or until toasted.

Process pine nuts and next 7 ingredients in a food processor until smooth, stopping to scrape down sides. With processor running, pour oil through food chute in a slow, steady stream. Transfer to serving bowl.

Cover and chill at least 1 hour. Serve with fried chicken strips or hot wings, cherry tomatoes, and crispy breadsticks. Garnish, if desired.

Note: If using purchased basil, 4 (1-ounce) packages will equal 2 cups loosely packed fresh basil leaves.

Devon Delaney, Princeton, New Jersey,

Southern Living

March 2006
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