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Bountiful Basil

June 24, 2014 , , , , , ,

Basil is a culinary herb that has magical qualities. The different varieties add distinct flavors to dishes and drinks.  You can purchase seeds for many varieties, but the most commonly used and grown is the Genovese.  This very hardy herb does well in pots or in the ground.  It is very tolerant of sun and thrives with minimal care.  It is important to keep the flowers trimmed so the plant does not go to seed.  The flowers have delicate flavor that can be used to flavor anything for which you would use the leaves.  The blooms look good in cut flower arrangements, and will scent the room where they are displayed.  A few common ways we see basil used are:

  • pesto sauce
  • caprese salad with tomato and mozzarella
  • in tomato sauce

I love using basil in all of these traditional ways.  When I find a really excellent tomato I always want to eat it with basil and fresh mozzarella. Pesto is used on everything in our house, not just for pasta.  We put it on eggs, roasted veggies, potato dishes, rice, and sandwiches of all kinds.  The bright green color and the bright flavor wake up any meal.  I find that making a large batch with really good olive oil, roasted pine nuts, garlic and basil stores very well.  I add the parmesan cheese at the time I am using it.  This also allows a different proportion for each kind of use.  The pesto is delicious without any cheese for those who prefer that.  I have tried some really tasty cocktails that contain muddled basil for flavor.  Here are some of my favorites:

That will give you some ideas to get started on your own basil concoctions to drink this summer.  It is good with citrus, cucumber, and other herbs.  Try a plain basil mojito to get yourself started. Basil is a prosperity herb, so you really can’t have too much of it in your food and drinks.  Enjoy!

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comments

I love Basil. It’s one of my favorite herbs. I really should be growing more of this!

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Stevie Wilson (@LAStory)

June 25, 2014

I just recently learned that it can be propagated from cuttings, so I am going to town with the reproduction. It works as well as mint…very easy.

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mermaidcamp

June 25, 2014

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