To me, nothing screams summer more than fresh garden basil. It grows on my back steps (I live in a city!) and most days as I head out to work I run my fingers through it so they smell all sorts of lovely and not like the sponge I just used to clean my breakfast dishes.
Sweet basil originally hails from India and technically is in the mint family. In traditional Tamil medicine basil is thought to treat asthma, stress, diabetes and acne. Basil extract has been proven toxic to bugs like mosquitoes and can be used as a natural insect repellent.
Growing up, one of my favorite simple summer meals prepared by my kitchen-whiz of a mother, who is now the Retreat Coordinater and Resident Chef at the super crunchy Sticks and Stones Farm in Conn., was this:
Garden Tomato Basil Pasta
3 cloves garlic,
mashed with 1 tsp salt
marinate garlic with:
1/2 cup olive oil
3 large ripe juicy tomatoes, chopped
1 cup fresh basil, chopped
1/2 cup parsley chopped
1/4 tsp black fresh pepper
Pour over 1 lb favorite hot pasta
This was delicious served hot, room temp, or straight out of the fridge the next morning for breakfast.
‘Tis the season, so recreate this recipe on your own with local garden goods! Let us know how it goes! Do you have a fav basil recipe? How about a creative basil cocktail? Here at iEG we are all about creative boozin’!