How to get the most out of your Basil plant

By Christina Collins

Basil grown from seed will always be stronger than basil plants purchased from a garden center and it is really easy. Once established, clip the basil right above the first set of four leaves and continue to clip often and it will reward you with large, bountiful, healthy leaves all season long. Once it goes to seed, it gets bitter and there is no going back, so keep an eye on it!

If you can’t keep up with your basil, make some basil pesto! It stores incredibly well in the freezer and also makes a great gift for friends and neighbors.

Basil Pesto

Use pesto as a sandwich spread, on pasta or toss with vegetables. Pesto has endless uses, freezes well in small portions and makes a great gift. 
Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 5 mins
Total Time 15 mins
Cuisine Italian

Ingredients
  

  • .5 cup pignoli or walnuts (It’s very important to make sure to use fresh nuts)
  • 2-3 tbsp chopped fresh garlic (Amount depends on intensity of the garlic & your taste preference)
  • 5 cups fresh basil leaves, packed down lightly
  • 1 tsp kosher salt
  • 3/4 tsp fresh ground pepper
  • 1.5 cups extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 cup good quality, fresh grated parmesan cheese

Instructions
 

  • Add the nuts and garlic into a food processor using the blade attachment. Process fro about 15 seconds.
  • Add the basil, salt and pepper. 
  • With the processor running, slowly pour in the olive oil through the feed tube and blend until the pesto is pureed well. 
  • Add the parmesan and puree for about one minute.
  • Use immediately or portion into air tight containers filling almost to the top. Add a thin layer of olive oil to the top to seal out any extra air and then secure with lid and freeze. 

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