Basil leaves are vibrant green, heart-shaped, and can be harvested as petite as half an inch and as large as up to four inches in length. Basil has highly aromatic qualities and flavor profiles; the wide range of distinctive fragrances within its chemical makeup emits citrus, clove, anise, and cinnamon notes, all providing a sensory memory that sets basil apart from other herbs.
Basil is a delicate herb that can be used whole, chopped, crushed into a paste, or dried, though it loses its aromatic properties when dried. It is most commonly used raw in fresh applications or when finishing cooked preparations as heat alters the flavor and color of the herb. Add strands of Basil to chopped, stacked, and bread salads. Serve chopped atop pizza, pasta, chicken, and fish. Combine with pistachios, pinenuts, and/or walnuts to make a creamy pesto sauce. The aromatic flavor of Basil pairs well with tomatoes, garlic, onion, corn, pear, mint, strawberry, and cow's milk cheeses.
Basil will keep dry and refrigerated for up to a week but is best when used immediately.
3 cups fresh basil leaves
4 garlic cloves
3/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
1/4 cup pine nuts