Fresh basil doesn’t keep very well, so be sure to use your basil in the next couple of days. If you don’t use your basil fresh, here is an easy way to preserve it. We purée the leaves with olive oil and freeze in freezer bags. Then when we are ready to use it we thaw it and add the rest of the pesto ingredients ( cheese, garlic, nuts, seasonings). It’s a real timesaver doing it this way. Of course basil is not just for tomatoes and mozzarella, these recipes are some creative ways to use basil.

Since fresh basil is best used right away, we like to give CSA members a basil plant for anytime access! Your basil will either want to be planted in the ground or potted up into a larger pot. It likes full sun but can do ok with some shade or even inside on a window sill. You’ll want to pluck the top set of leaves to encourage branching.  Look for the plant to start making little rosettes or the start of a flowering head and harvest no later then this point. In fact your plant might already be ready for the first picking!

Basil polenta

Basil lemonade

Pan seared fish with basil sauce


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