9 Uses of Basil
Basil, or Tulsi, is an herb that is used for culinary purposes i.e. for cooking. Even though associated mostly with Italian or Mediterranean cuisines, it actually originated in India. Apart from these cuisines even Thai and Vietnamese cuisines use basil to flavor their food. In India, basil is also known as Tulsi.
1. The best way to use fresh basil is to tear it into pieces and add it at the last moment to salads, pizzas or pastas. The reason behind this is that basil contains volatile oils which get destroyed on over cooking.
2. Generally basil is associated with Italian food because one of the most famous dishes, Pesto pasta, has originated in Italy. It is a basil, cheese, pine nut, garlic and olive oil sauce used in Italian cooking for pastas, pizzas, dips etc.
3. Basil is also used to flavor soups, whether crushed or freshly torn, is also put over salads, starters and main course.
4. Basil can be used as a dressing for salads or also as a marinade for cottage cheese. Simple Mozzarella and tomato salad becomes more exciting with a dash of fresh basil.
5. Basil lends a unique flavor for ice creams and chocolates. The fresh leaves are steeped in milk and then made into ice-creams.
6. Basil can be added to healthy stir-fries, especially those that include eggplant, cabbage, chili peppers, tofu etc. to give them a Thai flair.
7. Enjoy a warm cup of Basil tea by infusing chopped basil leaves in boiling water. This is beneficial for one's health.
8. It is used in the preparation of infused oils, such as the basil oil used in making stir-fries.
9. Basil also adds a spark of freshness to different kinds of smoothies. These smoothies are perfect for rejuvenating on a hot summer's day or providing a kick start to the day.