Sunday, September 19, 2010

Harvesting More Basil!

PeggyR from My Affairs with Art & Daily Life asked what I was doing with my basil.  Well, Peggy, I make jelly with lemon basil and cinnamon basil.  Here is the recipe I use, Carol.  It is from Renee's Garden.  I have both of her cookbooks.  I noticed in the above link it says two cups of basil or herbs.  In the cookbook it says 1-1/2 cups of basil.  It works just fine.  So 2 cups or 1-1/2 cups of scented basil for 2 cups of water.  I don't think it matters much.  I use the 1-1/2 cups (you don't use all of 2 cups) of liquid, 2 T. of vinegar and 3-1/2 cups of sugar as the basis for other jelly recipes.  I did a batch of raspberry jam and 3 batches of cinnamon basil jelly today.  Sort of tired!

Little Messy Missy, here is my favorite pesto recipe:

Presto it's Pesto
Cheap Thrills Cuisine by Lombardo & Bui
1993/Washington Post Writers Group

You'll need a food processor or a blender.  Pick 4 cups of fresh basil leaves.  (If you don't like all basil, try a combination of parsley or spinach and basil.)  Put 2 cups of basil (or a combination) in processor with 1/2 cup of olive oil.  Puree on pulse speed.  Add 6 (I use 2 or 3 at most) large peeled garlic cloves and  puree again.  Stir in 1/2 cup of pine nuts (walnuts are also a good choice).  Puree.  Add the remaining basil leaves.  Pulse until it forms a runny paste.  Season with 1 tsp. salt and 1 Tbsp. of Parmesan cheese.  Recipe makes one cup of spicy pesto sauce.  Try on garlic bread.  Use as a base for cheese pizzas.  Pesto is great as a flavor enhancer for sauces.  I sometimes freeze this recipe in ice cube trays.  If you do that, I would leave out the Parmesan cheese and add a little to the cubes once they are thawed.

Here is a link to find more Cheap Thrills Cuisine recipes on  You can't find recipes by type just date.  It is fun to click through the different days.  I like the recipes because they are quick and easy and sometimes for a big group, but a lot are low fat or low carb or just for 2.
The 'Boxwood' basil in the photo above will be made into vinegar.  Just sterilize a quart canning jar by putting boiling water in it for 10 minutes.  Then you want to clip the basil and wash it and dry it very well and then place it in the jar and then cover with red wine vinegar, white wine vinegar or apple cider vinegar.  Put some plastic wrap between the jar and the lid and put it on a sunny windowsill for at least two weeks and start testing for taste.  Well, I hope you have had a really great day!  Mine has been very busy.  Glad I found the pesto recipe.  I was using it as a bookmark in my garlic cookbook!  Just where I thought it would be!  Ha!  Talk to you later!


Terra said...

"We loves us our basil" from the garden at our house and my husband makes pesto with it, among other uses. The recipes you share here sound delicious.

Carol said...

Thanks for the recipes. Since I'm off work this week due to the Lyme Disease I'll be able to give these a try.
I am feeling better just wear out faster than normal so lots of naps are the order of the day.

PeggyR said...

Oooo thanks for sharing! I need to get busy and harvest mine!

lemonverbenalady said...

Thanks Terra, Carol and PeggyR for stopping by! Get busy ladies!