Basil

Common Herb, Uncommon Flavor

Basil

Basil is one of most commonly used herbs. Considered to be native to India, it has been cultivated there for more than 5,000 years and was initially used as a medicinal compound.

There is sweet basil, or what we call culinary basil, because of its common usage, Italian basil, purple basil, Thai basil, lemon basil, and many others, varying in colors from pale green to deep purple. Leaves differ as well, from small and pointed to big and round.

Each variety holds an astounding array of vitamins and minerals, has negligible calories, and knocks your socks off when it comes to disease-preventing anti-inflammatory compounds, too.

Basil pairs well with any recipes that include tomatoes, cheeses, beef, pastas, Used significantly in Italian cooking, it also plays a major role in Southeast Asian and Chinese cuisines. Depending on the species and cultivar, the leaves may taste somewhat like anise, with a strong, pungent, often sweet smell, or slightly lemony, or very strong and peppery.

The Lowdown

  • Season
    Spring/Summer
  • Color
    Green, Red, & Purple
  • Select
    Choose bright leaves that are fresh and not wilted or browning.
  • Store
    This fresh herb can be kept for a short time in plastic bags in the refrigerator.

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