I used to buy my basil in those little plastic sleeves at the store – the ones with 15 or so leaves, just enough for a pasta sauce. I thought this was the only way to buy basil. It was how my parents did it, so I just followed suit. So the first time I went to a farmers market and saw giant bunches of the stuff, I got a little excited and went a bit overboard. I bought lots. Way more than those little plastic sleeves ever had to offer. And it all went bad because I had no idea what to make with it.
These days, I’ll buy one big bunch and then I’ll use it throughout the week…in a stir fry, torn over some fresh tomatoes, in lots of salads, and in homemade dressings. And not only does this little green wonder pack a punch in my recipes, there are studies that show basil is a strong anti-inflammatory. And you know I’m all about that.
Another reason my basil went bad? I had no idea how to store it. Here’s a great cheat sheet at Real Simple on how to store herbs. *If you are in Chicago – my favorite place to get basil is from Smits Farms at Green City Market!
Do you have any favorite basil recipes? Share them in the comments!