Brilliant Basil

Do you love Basil? The herb, I mean. Do you want more of it? Then read on….

I love Basil Pesto! One of many of my favourites flavours of Summer. Leaves torn over a good tomato salad brings out the flavours of the tomatoes, and of course, Basil pesto blopped over pizza, or woven through pasta is irresistible. I see my duty as Head Gardener of the house, to make sure I have plenty of basil tucked between my tomato plants (strange how they make great companion plants for growing, as well as flavouring both in the garden and kitchen!).

Basil and Tomatoes…..great companions, in the garden or on the plate!!

Once I have a good establishment of a couple of basil bushes growing, I will pick 15cm stems and go about harvesting the leaves, leaving all but a few smaller leaves on the stalks. Place these stalks in a pottle of water, and watch as they grow roots in 10-14 days! Hey P(r)esto! You have new established cuttings of basil to pop back in the garden and extend your basil harvests well into Autumn. This can also be achieved with supermarketbought basil (sometimes you can buy them complete with roots, simply plant the whole plant after harvesting the leaves, or take cuttings of them).

I like to make excess basil pesto, and freeze them in smaller plastic containers for later use in winter and early spring. This pretty much ensures a whole year’s supply of basil. If the need for basil pesto has been greater than my stocks of it, I simply forage for parsley and/or nasturtium leaves to make pesto.

Isn’t nature magical?? More new Basil from old Basil!

Here is my Best Basil Pesto Recipe:

  • 1/4 cup almonds, toasted
  • 2 1/2 cups basil leaves
  • 2 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1/3 cup olive oil
  • 1 Tbspn Braggs savoury yeast flakes (optional)
  • Juice of half a lemon
  • Salt and black pepper to taste

Grind almonds in a coffee grinder, then blend all ingredients together in blender, gradually adding oil, till completely processed. Simple. Delicious. Simply delicious!


Ciao, Jizzy

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