We buy a semi-local pesto (made in NH) made by VegetaBall's Farm. It is really good. We get a large tub (12 ounces) for about $9 and use half right away, freezing the rest for later. We find half the tub will dress about a pound of pasta. I'm rather fussy about pesto, finding some kinds taste too insipid or oily and others have a strange pong. But VegetaBall's is always fresh, bright green, perfect proportions of ingredients, and if you think about it, a pretty good deal. I figure this by calculating how much it would cost to buy enough basil, pine nuts, olive oil and cheese to make my own--I think it would be more.
I used VegetaBall's on a pound of pasta last night and the results were delicious. I was using Delallo Organic pasta. The package for "Farfalloni No. 88" makes a big deal about them being "made with bronze plates." Apparently the bronze plates give each piece of pasta a rougher surface, so it takes sauce really well. I don't know if it's just that I'm a sucker for good copy (witness my love-hate relationship with the J. Peterman catalog, which makes Talbot's-type clothes sound like they've just stepped out of a Merchant Ivory movie) but I did find these little bowties to be just the perfect toothsome vehicle for my favorite pesto. I also threw in a thinly sliced sauteed zucchini--just cuz I like to sneak vegetables into everything. (Trying to fool myself, mostly.)