8 Years of Blog Archive


Frugal Cooking: Northern Italian Creamy Pesto

Fresh basil is so cheap here that Frank thinks we should eat pesto once a week! Where else can you feed a family of five for under a $3? This price includes the cheese, milk, garlic, and pasta. If you like pesto you will love creamy pesto the way the Northern Italians make it.


  1. Hi Guys: Love this post! My husband and I, along with our 1-month old daughter, Chiara, are planning to leave expensive Long Island and relocate to Ecuador in March, but we are going to Guayaquil, where we will have our own 3-BR 2-bath apt rent free (living below my in-laws jaja...). We are so done with the rat race and we want to enjoy time with our baby.

    It seems that your family has adjusted well to the ingredients and Ecuadorian cooking style. Although I represent both cultures (I'm 1/2 Ecu and 1/2 Italian), I tend to lean toward Italian/European cooking, (plantains and cilantro aren't really my thing) so I was wondering if you have tried to replicate typical Italian dishes with the ingredients you could find at the mercado or Supermaxi...I saw you did a great job on the Pesto.
    Also, have you been able to find things like prosciutto, fresh mozarella, etc.? Would love to hear from you!


  2. Hi Monica.
    Glad to see you are making choices that are consistent with your family values. Yes, you can see we've adapted well by the pesto, (aji) spice is actually quite mild. Well, we could go on and on about this, as you know, Italians are pretty picky about their food, so, yes we have found some "look-a-likes" but they don't really pass the taste test...Cuenca has not been "Italianized" yet!!! But do let us know if you have a better experience in Guayaquil. We're betting you can do better there since it's a much larger city....


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