Basil

Basil Recipes

 

Availability: August-September

Storage tips: Refrigerate in a plastic bag. It should last up to a week. Be careful not to smash the leaves in the fridge or let them get too cold because this will result in loss of quality and the basil will turn black.

How to eat: Basil is a wonderful herb that can be minced and added to salads, used to make pesto, or as a topping to pasta or pizza. Basil is best used very fresh.

How to preserve:  Best= Frozen:  Make and freeze pesto, leaving out the parmesan component.  Add it back in when you thaw it.  OR freeze into Basil Cubes as in recipe below.

Or make the below recipe Basil Infused Vinegar with your extra basil.  Delicious in the winter!

Or you can dehydrate it and use it dried.

This is an easy recipe, but not a fast one because you are waiting for the infusion process to work.  I like to use it in salad dressings or over cooked greens like kale or Swiss chard.  Enjoy!

  • approx 1 quart vinegar (I like raw apple cider vinegar, but any would work)
  • 1 large handful of fresh basil leaves, roughly chopped
  • garlic cloves, optional

Add the basil leaves and optional garlic to the jar.  Cover with vinegar.  Add a lid.  Let stand at room temperature for 2 weeks.  Taste and if you like the flavor, strain.  If it's still weak, let stand another week and repeat process until you're satisfied with the flavor.  Store in your cupboard until its gone! 

1.5 packed cups basil
2-3 cloves garlic, peeled
¼ - ½ tsp sea salt
3 tbls nuts (pine nuts are traditional, but we often use walnuts)
3 tbls Parmesan cheese, grated
4 tbls olive oil

Place basil in food processor, pulse until chopped. Add remaining ingredients (if you want you can save out the olive oil until last and add it using the attachment that lets you add liquids drop by drop) and process to a smooth paste. Pesto lasts several days in the fridge, if sealed. It also freezes excellently. Serve mixed into pasta or on pizza instead of tomato sauce. It’s also good with meat or fish.

  • 1 tsp mustard
  • 1/4 cup vinegar (I used cider vinegar)
  • 1 TBLS tahini*
  • 1/2-3/4 cup olive oil
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • minced fresh basil

Mix everything together to emulsify. Yum!

*If your tahini is kinda hard (from being in the fridge or just is a little dry), mix it with a little bit of olive oil to soften into peanut butter consistency before adding it to the dressing (see pic). It will fully emulsify in your dressing that way and not be clumpy!

The most efficient and versatile way to freeze basil is by making basil cubes. You can toss them into soups at the last-minute for some fresh flavor.

  • Basil leaves, washed
  • olive oil

Add basil to the food processor or chop with a knife and add enough oil to coat the leaves to make a thick paste. Spoon the mixture into ice cube trays, freeze, and when frozen pop them out and transfer to well-sealed freezer bags.

  • ½ cup olive oil
  • 2 TBLS lemon juice
  • 2 TBLS red wine or cider vinegars
  • 1 ½ tsp prepared mustard
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1-2 TBLS fresh basil, chopped
  • salt and/or sweetener to taste

Whisk together Pour over salad and top with feta cheese and black olives.

The title of this recipe is from Mary Margaret who considers this it!  Try it and you'll understand!

tomatoes, chopped
cucumbers, peeled and chopped
basil, chopped

For the dressing, wisk together:
1/2 cup soft cheese like chevre (or homemade kefir cheese or yogurt cheese)
4-6 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon cider vinegar
salt to taste

Optional additional ingredients:
black olives, minced
avocado (which makes this salad eerily similar to the Tomato-Basil-Avocado salad we have on the website, too :)

Combine salad ingredients and pour over dressing.  Toss to coat and serve!