What to do with an armload of basil?

First off, start off by making some basil vinegar. Here I used red wine vinegar, white wine vinegar and rice wine vinegar. Champagne vinegar is also a good choice. I’ve become a fan of the “not hot” vinegar method – the hot methods has you heating the vinegar prior to pouring it over the herbs. For delicate herbs like basil, I prefer to combine clean, dry herbs with the room temperature vinegar and letting it sit for two weeks or so in a cool place.

Making pesto is another good option – chopping basil leaves along with olive oil and garlic in your food processor then freezing. I usually add the Romano cheese and toasted pine nuts, traditional pesto ingredients, later.

You can also dry your basil – strip off leaves from the plant stem – wash and dry and then dry some more then place in sterilized jar or ziplock bag. Alternatively, cut whole stems and wash, dry and and hang in bunches upside down.  When dry, remove leaves from stem and place in sterilized jar or ziplock bag

And, be careful out there. When you look around, there will be a re-growth of the basil plant and many more possibilities for preserving  your delightful overabundance of Ocimum basilicum.

Basil         Basil vinegar and pesto