Whether blended into glistening pesto or tucked between tomato and mozzarella slices, fresh basil is a must-have flavor for summer. This annual herb is used in Mediterranean and Asian cooking and pairs well with tomatoes, beans, pasta, poultry and seafood. Although a member of the mint family, basil tastes subtly of licorice and cloves. In Thailand and Vietnam, it’s often used with mint in stir-fries and salads.
Fresh basil is in supermarkets year-round, but is a better value at farmers’ markets where large, just-picked bunches are often sold. It’s also easy to grow in the garden. Expand your basil horizons by trying more than the sweet, green variety. Try purple opal, lemon, Thai and cinnamon basils, too!
- Tuck a few basil leaves inside summer sandwiches—such as BLT’s—for a hint of herbal flavor.
- Sprinkle thinly sliced basil over pizza or bruschetta for a burst of color and Italian flair.
- Whip up a batch of homemade pesto in the blender or food processor and toss with pasta and tomatoes for a cool and easy weeknight meal.
- Bump up the taste and eye appeal of side dishes—such as vegetable salads and rice—by blending in a handful of chopped basil.
- Toss basil leaves into green salads and top with your favorite KRAFT Italian Dressing or KRAFT Special Collection Greek Vinaigrette Dressing.
- Blend chopped basil with KRAFT Mayo Real Mayonnaise or GREY POUPON Dijon Mustard for a delicious herb-flavored sandwich spread.
- Substitute fresh basil for dried in creamy dips for fresh summer flavor. Use 1 tablespoon chopped fresh basil for each teaspoon dried basil.
Tomato-Basil Queso Fundido
Cherry Tomato & Basil Salad
Fresh Corn with Lemon-Basil Parmesan Butter
Rotini with Fresh Tomatoes and Basil
Tomato-Basil Chicken Roll-Ups