several varieties of basil
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Researchers report that basil contains antibacterial compounds, which make the essential oil great for treating skin conditions. In India it is used in a kind of aroma therapy and is said to give people sattva, enlightenment and harmony. In Arabian countries it has long been used to alleviate menstrual cramps, so, many Arabian men refuse to eat it. We hope you will all try it.
from Julia’s kitchen
In a mortar (when you have lots of time) or food processor (when time is
limited), grind together: basil leaves, a smaller amount of parsley leaves, toasted nuts (walnuts or pine
nuts), garlic cloves, grated parmesan cheese. Slowly add some olive
oil. Then add salt and pepper to taste.
The amounts vary by your taste, fat intake, interests, etc. You can
find exact recipes in many cookbooks. Some people say pounding your own
pesto in a mortar and pestle is better and that the pesto comes out
differently. I mostly use my food processor and look forward to the day
I can try to smash together the basil and taste the difference.
3 Tablespoons pine nuts or almonds, lightly toasted
1 Cup lightly packed basil leaves
2 Tablespoons Italian parsley leaves
1 lg. clove garlic, thinly sliced
1/3 Cup olive oil
In a food processor (or blender), combine nuts, basil, parsley, and garlic. Pulse, until well chopped. With motor running, add oil in a stream. Transfer mixture to a bowl and stir in cheese and salt to taste. Store with a thin layer of oil to keep fresh and green. (The parsley helps keep the bright green color too.)
SPECIAL BASIL storage notes: It shouldn’t get too cold, so try to find the ‘warmest’ place in your fridge. For some that’s the door, for others that might be the produce drawer. In my own fridge, the back of the fridge tends to get coldest.... I’ve read recently that wrapping the basil bunch in a damp clean cloth (I used an old clean cloth napkin) and put that in the ‘vegetable crisper’. It worked for me! If you’re not sure about your fridge you can try keeping your basil as a flower bunch in a jar with water at the stems. I don’t recommend drying basil: it’s best used up or made into pesto and then freezing the pesto if you want to keep the flavor for another week/month.
white wine vinegar
Whirl together the above ingredients, and toss with lightly steamed green beans and/or cooked potatoes, or? Then toss with: chopped walnuts and 3 sliced scallions.
Bean Salad Recipe from Michelle Russell
It's a very simple bean salad that I never tire of, guests have been happy too. First, I get four or so different cans of beans and put them in a bowl. I like to mix colors, so my salad includes garbanzo, black, navy and red. Then I splash balsamic and olive oil over the beans, letting it sit while I wash and chop whatever herbs I have at hand. I like to add at least a half of cup of herbs. My last salad featured parsley and basil. Delicious! Thinly slice green or other sweet onions and add those too. Stir everything adding salt and pepper to taste. Serve over whatever salad greens you have. That's it. I've also made a tasty version by making the vinaigrette separately, in a blender, with dried tomatoes added. The tomatoes get ground up and the vinaigrette emulsifies nicely. This salad travels well and makes great leftovers.
ROASTED-GARLIC BASIL SAUCE
4 large garlic cloves
1 medium zucchini
3/4 cup packed fresh basil leaves
1/4 cup packed fresh flat-leafed parsley leaves
1/2 cup water
2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
Preheat oven to 425°F. Wrap garlic cloves tightly in foil. Cut zucchini into 1/4-inch-thick slices and season with salt and pepper. Put foil-wrapped garlic and zucchini on a baking sheet and roast in middle of oven until garlic is tender and zucchini is pale golden, about 15 minutes. Unwrap garlic and cool. Have ready a bowl of ice water. In a saucepan of boiling water blanch basil and parsley 10 seconds and drain in a sieve. Refresh herbs in ice water to stop cooking and drain in sieve. Sauce ingredients may be prepared up to this point 1 day ahead and kept separately, covered and chilled. In a blender blend garlic, zucchini, herbs, water, and lemon juice until smooth, about 1 minute, and season with salt and pepper. Makes about 3/4 cup. Each 3 tablespoon serving about 14 calories and 0 grams fat. Gourmet September 1997
Basil Ice Cream!
Julias adaptation from a recipe originally gathered from Chowhound
This is an herbacious ice cream that would do well with a simple sugar or shortbread cookie. I use a small Donvier ice cream maker (the kind that has a canister you freeze; when it's time to make the ice cream you assemble the frozen canister with the holder and cover and just do a few twists of the handle while doing everything else in the kitchen: it's VERY easy and no salt is necessary.
1 cup milk, divided
1/2 cup loosely packed fresh basil leaves
1 cups whipping cream (8 ounces, one half pint)
1/2 cup sugar, divided
3 large or 4 small egg yolks
Garnish: fresh basil sprigs
COOK 1/2 cup milk in a heavy saucepan over low heat until bubbly. Stir in basil leaves, and remove from heat. Cover and let stand at room temperature 20 minutes.PROCESS basil mixture in a blender until smooth, stopping to scrape down sides. Pour mixture through a wire-mesh strainer into a bowl, discarding solids. Set aside.COOK remaining 1/2 cup milk, whipping cream, and 1/4 cup sugar in saucepan over medium heat, stirring often, just until mixture is bubbly. Remove from heat.BEAT egg yolks and remaining 1/4 cup sugar at medium speed with an electric mixer until thick and pale. Gradually stir about one-fourth of hot milk mixture into yolks; add to remaining hot mixture, stirring constantly. Stir in basil mixture and cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, 6 minutes or until mixture thickens and coats a spoon. Cover and chill 4 hours.POUR chilled mixture into ice cream maker of choice and follow their directions. Serve in frozen lemon shells, and garnish, if desired. This recipe can easily be doubled or quadrupled for larger ice cream makers/crowds.
Real Basil Cheesecake
from the Madison Herb Society Cookbook
2 large eggs
1 cup sour cream
3/4 cup sugar
1 cup basil leaves, destemmed
2 Tablespoons cornstarch
2 Tablespoons lemon juice
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 pounds cream cheese, at room temperature
2 Tablespoons butter, softened
1 cup crushed graham crackers or vanilla wafers
Preheat oven to 450 degrees. In food processor or mixer, lightly beat eggs. Add sour cream, sugar, basil, cornstarch, lemon juice, and vanilla. Process until smooth. Add cream cheese, 1/2 pound at a time, and process to incorporate. Spread softened butter on bottom and halfway up sides of a 9- or 10-inch springform pan. Cover buttered area with cookie crumbs, pressing to be sure they stick. Pour in cheesecake batter and bake 35-40 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Run a knife around edges of cake as soon as it comes out of oven. Cool on wire rack 5 minutes then remove the side of pan. Finish cooling. Cut with dental floss into thin wedges. Ten servings.
Zucchini with Basil and Pecorino Romano Cheese
from Verdura by Viana La Place
1 1/2 pounds firm zucchini
4 Tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
3 garlic cloves, peeled and chopped
Salt and Pepper to taste
3 Tablespoons freshly grated imported Pecorino Romano cheese
10 basil leaves
Wash the zucchini well. Trim the zucchini and slice into thin coins. Place olive oil in a large saute pan and turn the heat to high. Add the zucchini and toss in the oil until it is lightly golden in spots but still crisp, about 4 minutes. Turn the heat to medium low, add the garlic and S & P to taste. Cook until the zucchini is tender but still has a trace of crispness.
Transfer the zucchini to a serving platter. Sprinkle the grated Pecorino Romano cheese over the zucchini. Tear the basil leaves into fragments and scatter them over the top.
ROTI W/ BLACK BEANS AND BASIL
The Good Herb, Judith Benn Hurley
1 tbsp. plus 1 tsp. olive oil
1 small onion, thinly sliced
1 clove garlic, mashed through a press
1 medium tomato, medium-chopped
2 tsp. good-quality yellow curry powder
1 tsp. dried hot red pepper flakes, or to taste
1/4 cup dry sherry or mirin
2 1/4 cups cooked rice
1/2 cup cooked black beans, rinsed if canned
1/4 cup minced fresh basil (any type)
4 pitas (whole wheat are tasty)
2 tsp. Dijon mustard
Heat a large saute pan, then pour in 1 tbsp. of the oil. Add the onion,
garlic, tomato, curry powder, and hot pepper and saute over medium-high
heat until the onion is just wilted, about 3 minutes. Add the sherry,
rice, and beans and continue to saute until the rice is warmed through,
about 3 minutes. Remove from the heat and stir in the basil.
Spread each pita lightly with the mustard. Scoop equal portions of the
rice mixture onto one-half of each pita. Fold each pita over into a
Wipe out the saute pan and heat the remaining 1 tsp. oil until hot and
fragrant. Set the roti in the pan and let them sizzle over medium-high
heat until mottled brown, about 2-3 minutes on each side. Serve hot.
Makes 4 entree servings.
A Simple TOMATO AND BASIL SAUCE
The Top 100 Italian Dishes, Diane Seed
1 tbsp. olive oil
1 small onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 lbs. tomatoes, peeled
8 basil leaves
Heat the oil and gently fry the onion and garlic until they are
transparent. Add the tomatoes and cook quickly in a shallow uncovered
pan so that the sauce thickens and remains a bright red. Season to
taste then puree with the basil leaves.
CAPELLINI WITH LEMON AND BASIL
The Savory Way, Deborah Madison
zest of 1 lemon, cut into narrow strips
juice of 1 lemon
1 1/2 tbsp. unsalted butter
1 1/2 tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
8 fresh basil leaves, finely sliced
2 tsp. finely chopped parsley
3 oz. capellini
freshly ground pepper
freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano (optional)
Put the lemon zest, juice, butter, oil and herbs in a bowl large enough
to hold the cooked pasta comfortably. Also have ready 2 heated pasta
bowls or plates.
Bring several quarts of water to a boil, salt to taste and add the
pasta, and cook until al dente. Lift out the noodles with a pasta scoop
and add them immediately to the large bowl. Repeatedly lift the noodles
with a pair of tongs, mixing them with the other ingredients as you do
so. Divide the pasta between the 2 bowls and add a little pepper.
Serve with cheese, if desired.
Onions in Basil Cream
from Recipes from a Kitchen Garden by Renee Sheperd
1 bunch onions
2 Tbs. butter
2 tsp. shallots, finely chopped
1/4 c fresh chopped basil
1/4 c dry vermouth
1 c heavy cream
salt to taste
Cut the tops off the onions and discard. Put onions in boiling salted water for about 5 minutes. (If you have an abundance of chicken stock, poach them in it; they are tastier!) Remove the onions. Cool. Take uncut end of onion and squeeze onion out the cut end. (You are removing the skins.) Reserve the onions.
In a skillet or saute pan, heat the butter and saute the shallots and basil. Deglaze the pan by adding the vermouth, bringing to a rapid boil for one minute and scraping up the bits with a spoon. Add cream. Simmer the sauce to reduce to desired consistency. Salt to taste. Add the onions and rewarm.
PEANUT DRESSING WITH THAI BASIL
(Note from Julia: This is also good with other basils. I didn't have roasted peanut oil so I used 2 tbsp. peanut butter with 2 tbsp. canola oil and it worked fine.)
2 1/2 tbsp.
1/2 to 1
|roasted peanut oil
garlic, finely minced
serrano chile, diced
scallions, including an inch of green, thinly sliced
mint leaves, finely chopped
chopped basil (Thai or other)
Combine everything in a bowl and whisk together. Taste for salt.
It has a slight anise flavor and it's sometimes known as anise basil. Treat it the same as you would the genovese basil, and try it anywhere you would use 'regular' basil. Thai basil can go with ANYTHING. Look for that dressing recipe last week, or email me for a repeat: it's great with Thai basil.
Whirl in your food processor or blender (blender method may need a bit more oil): leaves and tiny stems from 1 bunch Thai basil, 1/3 cup toasted walnuts, 1/3 cup parmesan cheese, 2 roughly chopped garlic cloves. Then add with the machine running: 1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil. Season with salt and pepper.
Boil in salted water to cover until very tender:
Drain well and return to the pan. Place back on the burner and shake to dry the potatoes. Peel all or half of the potatoes, then smash with a large spoon or fork, blending in:
salt and pepper, to taste
Serve hot. The potatoes can be placed in an oiled baking dish and reheated in a 375 degree oven just before serving.
Joy of Cooking, Rombauer, et al.
|boneless chicken, cut in strips
string beans or summer squash, cut in 2" strips
shredded chiles (I used a teaspoon of chili paste...)
fish sauce (or a dash of Worcesteshire instead)
Heat 2 tbsp. oil then stirfry the chiles and garlic until fragrant. Add chicken and veggies, stirfry until meat changes color. Add rice, fish sauce, soy sauce, sugar and basil leaves; stir fry and mix well. Serve.
Thai Cooking Made Easy, Sukhum Kittivech
|green beans, trimmed and cut in 3" lengths
butter or olive oil
onions, coarsely chopped
celery, coarsely chopped
basil, finely chopped
Saute onions and celery in butter or olive oil until tender (approx 5 min). Add beans and water; cover (I actually add less water, or none, but this method calls for close monitoring). Add basil as it finishes cooking.
|3 - 4 tbsp.
|seeded and finely chopped Anaheim or "California"
chopped fresh basil
chopped fresh mint
whole chicken breast, boned, skinned, cut into 2"x 1/4" thick
lg. onion, halved, then sliced 1/4" thick
Mix together chiles, soy sauce, sugar, vinegar, basil, mint and cornstarch. Heat 2 tbsp. oil in a large frying pan or wok over high heat. When oil is hot, add chicken and garlic. Cook stirring constantly, until meat losses its pinkness, about 4 minutes; turn out of pan and keep warm. Heat 1 tbsp. of oil in pan, then add the onion; cook, stirring, for 2 minutes. Add chili mixture and return chicken and juice to pan; cook, stirring, until sauce thickens slightly. Transfer to a serving platter and keep warm. Serve with hot fluffy rice.
|1 lg. clove
|clove garlic, finely minced
chopped fresh basil leaves
freshly cracked black pepper
red wine vinegar
tamari, or soy sauce
Hot Chili Oil
Combine all the ingredients and refrigerate until needed. Makes 1 cup
Copyright © 1996 by Norman Van Aken
1 1/4 cups
2 1/2 cups
Arborio or other short-grain rice
hot vegetable stock or defatted chick stock
fresh porchini mushrooms (or any other fresh or dried mushroom), chopped
water-packed artichoke hearts, chopped
minced fresh basil
freshly grated Parmesan cheese or soy Parmesan
Heat a large deep frying pan over medium-high heat and pour in the olive oil. When it's fragrant, add the onion and garlic, reduce the heat, saute for about a minute. Crush the saffron between your fingers, add to the pan, and cook until the onion is fragrant and tender, about 5 minutes. Stir in the rice, stock, bay leaf, and mushrooms and bring to a boil, uncovered. Reduce the heat to medium and cook, stirring frequently, until the rice is tender and has absorbed all of the liquid, about 15 minutes. Swirl in the artichoke hearts, basil, cheese, scallions, and sea salt. Serve warm as a first course or entree.
The Good Herb, Judith Benn Hurley
BASIL BEER BREAD, Real Simple, AUGUST 2006
Olive oil for the baking sheet
3 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/4-ounce package active dry yeast
1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
3/4 cup (3 ounces) grated Parmesan
1 12-ounce bottle beer, preferably ale
Flour for the work surface
1 cup chopped or torn fresh basil
Heat oven to 400° F. Oil a baking sheet.
In the bowl of a standing mixer on low, or in a large bowl using a spoon, combine the flour, yeast, salt, pepper, and Parmesan. Add the beer and mix just until the dough comes together. Turn the dough onto a lightly floured surface. Sprinkle with the basil and knead gently just until incorporated.
Shape the dough into a round loaf and transfer to the prepared sheet. Bake until the loaf is lightly browned and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, 40 to 45 minutes. Turn the loaf onto a wire rack. Let cool for at least 10 minutes before slicing.
Tip: This dense, hearty bread is best when it's thickly sliced and served with a plate of fresh tomatoes or a bowl of summer minestrone. You can also toast it and drizzle it with olive oil. Yield: Makes 1 loaf
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