BASIL 

Basil is one of the most popular herbs to cook with for its bold flavor and versatility. Basil is also packed with vitamin K, a nutrient excellent for heart, blood, and bone health. Originating in Asia and Africa, basil has been used for centuries for many different remedies.

Planting your Basil

  • To plant your basil seeds, use your finger to draw a line 1/4 inch deep in the soil. Space seeds 12-21 inches apart, then cover with soil. Water seeds daily. After basil is established at 4-5 inches tall, you can reduce watering to fit your garden's needs. Basil can be grown easily in pots, indoors in a windowsill, or outside in a garden.

Harvesting

  • Basil can be harvested in small portions throughout the season or harvested completely. If you are harvesting as the plant grows, only pick one third of the plant to prevent shock. Basil will be fully grown approximately 55 days from seed to harvest. Remove the leaves by cutting the side shoots and leave the main stem intact. Pick the largest leaves at the bottom first. Pinch off the flowers of the plant to extend your harvest and allow more leaves to grow.
  • Basil can be used in hundreds of dishes. Add your fresh grown basil to dressings, pizzas, pastas, or make a show-stopping pesto to wow your friends and family.

Recipe

FRESH BASIL PESTO

Ingredients:


2 cups fresh basil
½ cup freshly grated parmesan-reggiano cheese
⅓ cup toasted pine nuts
½ cup extra virgin olive oil
3 teaspoons of minced garlic
½ teaspoon of salt
⅛ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

  • Toast pine nuts in a skillet over medium heat until golden brown (about 5 minutes).
  • Using a food processor or blender, pulse the basil and add in nuts until lightly mixed.
  • Combine garlic and cheese into the food processor and pulse. 
  • Scrape the sides of the food processor often, then while the processor is running, drizzle in olive oil until the pesto becomes the desired consistency. Stir in salt and pepper and enjoy.

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