Thursday, November 08, 2018

Aromatic herb: Basil leaves

Basil has stirred people’s passion for many millennia. It has been associate with emotions ranging from love to hate, and has been used ceremonially “to pave the way to both heaven and hell’.

Though all the basils are wonderfully aromatic a flavorful herbs, it is the sweet, green bush basil that is the most beloved. It is native to India, Africa and Asia.

Fresh basil is closely associated with Italian food. Basil leaf is number one choice for making pesto and combining with tomatoes. Besides the traditional pest and antipasto di pomodoro e mozzarella, basil is wonderful with any summer vegetable or salad,;on sandwiches and pizza, in soups, sauces, salsa, and vinaigrettes; with pasta or grains; in a Bloody Mary; and in baked goods and even gelati.

One of basil’s quirky characteristics is that it quickly loses its flavorful taste and bouquet when cooked. For this reason, it should be added to a dish or sauce at the end of cooking time, or even used raw.

Basil leaves can be frozen for use in soups and stews. Basil vinegar makes lovely marinade for meat and it can be combined with oil for use in flavoring meats, vegetables and sauces.
Aromatic herb: Basil leaves
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