Chef Massimo Bottura’s Mint-Basil Pesto Recipe

Written by MasterClass

Last updated: Sep 17, 2022 • 2 min read

“If tradition doesn’t respect the ingredients, you must change the recipe.” —Massimo Bottura

Adapting and altering dishes based on the quality, seasonality, and freshness of ingredients is one calling card of a great chef. No dish in the Italian culinary canon exemplifies this principle more than pesto. Pesto is made with very simple ingredients: basil, extra-virgin olive oil, garlic, Parmigiano, and pine nuts. But you don’t have to limit yourself to that particular formula. If fresh basil isn’t readily available or you don’t have any pine nuts, have the confidence to change course, using another herb in place of the basil or replacing the pine nuts with fresh bread crumbs.