Basil is used for coughs, skin diseases, and intestinal problems. The seed still finds use as a bulk-forming laxative and diuretic
Here is my recipe for basil pesto, fresh out of the garden:
- 2 cups fresh basil leaves, packed
- 1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan-Reggiano or Romano cheese or no cheese at all
- 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 1/3 cup walnuts
- 3 medium sized garlic cloves, minced
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
1 Combine the basil in with the pine nuts, pulse a few times in a food processor. Add the garlic, pulse a few times more.
2 Slowly add the olive oil in a constant stream while the food processor is on. Stop to scrape down the sides of the food processor with a rubber spatula. Add the grated cheese (if used) and pulse again until blended. Add a pinch of salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste.
Makes 1 cup.