Friday, July 26, 2013

Basil, Basil - Everywhere!

Every year, we end up with an over abundance of fresh basil! Sure, I do all of the obvious things:  Make pesto, basil butter, margherita pizzas, insalata caprese, bruschetta, etc . . . etc.  But I STILL have more than we can possibly consume!  How did I end up with so much you say?  Well it starts here:

These are the seeds that we saved from the previous year's crop

And this is what happens when you let your HUBBY plant those seeds.

And this . . . 

And this! Did you know that you can freeze it?  I learned this from my Italian Mother-In-Law.

  Just pick the large leaves

 This is our dog, Shelby! She's my basil picking helper!

Give them a good rinse to remove any unwanted little critters. I like to give them a spin in my salad spinner to remove most of the water.

Then place the leaves in the middle of a clean dish towel.

Bundle it up and give it a whirl! (I recommend doing this outside!)

Place the dry leaves in a large zip-top freezer bag, remove as much air as possible, seal and place in your freezer.

Thisis what they will look like when they are frozen.

 We do this every year!  When I need some basil to use in a recipe, I just pull out a handful and crumble them (they'll crumble because they're frozen) right into my soups, stews, marinara sauce, or whatever I'm making!  They will be darker in color than when they were fresh, but the flavor is still there.

Buon Appetito!