I made pesto today. I wish my friend Gloria could have seen me. The first time she offered me pesto, I was unable to get past the fact that it looked like chewed-up grass and politely declined. My palate has become at least a little more sophisticated since then and every summer I plant basil so that I can make my own.
The recipe I use calls for pecans instead of walnuts, a substitution that makes it an appropriately southern dish for the dog days of summer.
Today's effort was proceeding well until I got all the ingredients into the bowl of the food processor and the processor wouldn't turn on. I tried the pulse button, the low button, the high button. I tried a different outlet, thinking that maybe last night's thunderstorm had tripped the breaker. Nothing helped.
So I started over with the assemblage of the machine that I admit scares me just a little bit. This time I inserted the "food pusher" as directed by the instructions, despite the fact that I didn't need it. And, of course, that was what it took. Every piece has a function.
Supper was ditalini (It means "small thimbles" and is the pasta traditionally used in minestrone.) and pesto. It tasted like summer.
It also tasted like an object lesson: Begin (and continue)any endeavor with the assumption that instructions have a purpose.
Instructions like, Wear a mask. Instructions like, Don't believe everything you read on the internet. Instructions like, Treat other people as you would like to be treated.
And, whatever you do, don't forget the food masher.