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Old 08-06-2006, 08:28 AM   #1
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ISO Basil recipes (3 threads merged)

I have an over abundance of Basil in my garden this year and am looking for some new recipes. Pesto is my favorite, and I tried the Zuchinni-Basil Soup recipe. I was wondering if anyone had more ideas?


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Old 08-06-2006, 09:08 AM   #2
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I'm not aware of too many recipes that center on basis, aside from pesto. Perhaps you could try drying some for use after the growing season -- I would think that it would be better than store-bought dried pesto.

Here's one idea, although I think I posted this the other day. It uses a cup of fresh basil. You could substitute zucchini for the eggplant -- cut it lengthwise in 1/4-inch strips, very lightly coat with olive oil, season with salt and pepper, and lightly broil on both sides until softened and starting to brown.


1 large eggplant, cut into 3/8-inch thick slices (about 16 slices)
olive oil
salt and pepper

Arrange eggplant slices in single layer on two baking sheets that have been lightly coated with olive oil. Lightly brush or spray tops of eggplant with olive oil and season with salt and pepper to taste.

Broil eggplant on high, one baking sheet at a time, about 5 to 8 inches from heat source, until soft and lightly browned, about 2½ minutes.

Use spatula to turn slices, and season with salt and pepper. Broil 2½ minutes more.

Repeat with other baking sheet. Set aside.


1 15-ounce container part-skim ricotta cheese
¼ cup grated Romano cheese
1 egg
1 cup basil leaves, stems removed, loosely packed

Put ricotta, Romano cheese, egg and basil in bowl of food processor and mix well, about one minute. Set aside.


1 24-ounce jar spicy tomato sauce
12 "no-boil" lasagna noodles
2 cups shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese
¼ cup grated Parmesan cheese

Lightly coat a 9" x 13" x 2" baking dish with olive oil.

Spread 1 cup sauce in pan. Place 6 lasagna noodles over sauce, slightly overlapping.

Spread half the ricotta mixture over noodles.

Top with 8 eggplant slices.

Sprinkle eggplant with 1 cup mozzarella cheese.

Repeat layers.

Finish with remaining sauce and grated Parmesan cheese.

Bake, uncovered, at 350° until bubbling and lightly browned, about 55 minutes. Let rest 10 minutes before serving.

Note: if you use regular lasagna noodles instead of the "no-boil" type, use only 6 noodles, cover the uncooked lasagna with plastic wrap and leave it on the refrigerator overnight to soften the noodles. Bring to room temperature and uncover before baking.

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Old 08-06-2006, 09:55 AM   #3
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I love basil! Here are a few recipes from my files.

Tomato Basil Crab Bisque

2 tablespoons unsalted butter
10 ounces fresh crabmeat, divided*
1 tomato, peeled, seeded and chopped (about 1/2 cup)
1/3 cup plus 3 tablespoons chopped fresh basil leaves
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1 3/4 cups clam juice
1 (5.5-ounce) can V8 vegetable juice
1 cup whipping cream
1 to 2 teaspoons old bay seasoning
1/4 teaspoon hot pepper sauce
3/4 cup water
2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
Salt and pepper to taste

* I used the Premium canned backfin crab meat from Costco

In a large heavy soup pot over low heat, melt butter. NOTE: I like to
use low heat when making this soup, as it gives me more control. Add
3/4 of crabmeat, tomato, 1/3 cup chopped fresh basil, and garlic;
sauté 2 minutes. Whisk in flour; stir 2 minutes. Whisk in clam juice,
V8 vegetable juice, whipping cream, Old Bay seasoning, and hot pepper
sauce. Simmer over low heat until slightly thickened, approximately 10
to 15 minutes. Remove from heat and let soup cool slightly.

Puree soup in batches in a food processor or blender until smooth.
Return soup to pot. Stir in water and lemon juice. Season to taste
with salt and pepper; bring to simmer before serving.

NOTE: Can be made 1 day ahead. Chill uncovered until cold, then cover
and keep refrigerated.

To serve, divide soup among 6 individual soup bowls. Sprinkle with
remaining crabmeat and 3 tablespoons basil.

Makes 6 first-course servings.

Tomato Basil Soup

8 to 10 tomatoes, peeled, cored and chopped, or 4 c canned crushed
4 c tomato juice or part tomato juice, part chicken or vegetable stock
12 to 14 fresh basil leaves
1 c heavy cream
1/2 c (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
Salt and pepper to taste

Over medium heat, combine tomatoes and juice in a large saucepan and
simmer for 30 minutes. In a food processor, combine tomato mixture and
basil leaves in several small batches and process until smooth. Return
blended mixture to saucepan over low heat. Stir in cream and butter,
then season with salt and pepper. Continue stirring over low heat
until soup is heated through. Serves 8.

Basil Cream New Potato Salad
6 pounds small new potatoes
1/4 cup hot chicken or vegetable broth or stock
6 hard-cooked eggs, chopped
4 cups loosely packed fresh basil leaves
2 to 3 cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
2 teaspoons freshly ground pepper
1 tablespoon coarse salt
1 tablespoon prepared honey mustard
1 cup cream
1 cup mayonnaise
In a large pan over medium-high heat, add potatoes and cover with cold water; bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer, uncovered, approximately 12 to 15 minutes or until just tender. Remove from heat and drain. NOTE: I usually remove the skins when the potatoes have cooled enough to hold. You can either remove the skins or leave them on. Cut the warm potatoes into bite-sized pieces and place in a large mixing bowl; pour hot chicken or vegetable broth or stock over the potatoes. Add hard-cooked eggs. In a food processor or blender, combine basil leaves and garlic; whirl until smooth. Add lemon juice, pepper, salt, honey mustard, and cream; process a few times just to blend. Add mayonnaise and process just to blend. Pour basil-cream mixture over the potatoes/eggs and mix well. Cover and refrigerate at least 2 hours or overnight before serving. Makes 16 servings.
*Note:I peel and dice my potatoes before cooking.


Roasted bell peppers, proscuitto, and olives are added to the classic Italian trio of tomatoes, mozzarella, and basil. Serve with plenty of crusty country bread.

2 large red bell peppers
1 cup (packed) fresh basil leaves
1 garlic clove
1/2 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 pound thinly sliced proscuitto
2 8-ounce balls fresh water-packed mozzarella cheese, drained, thinly sliced into rounds
4 large tomatoes, thinly sliced
6 hard-boiled eggs, shelled, sliced into 1/4-inch-thick rounds
1/4 cup Kalamata olives or other brine-cured black olives, pitted, coarsely chopped

Char peppers directly over gas flame or under broiler until blackened on all sides. Enclose in paper bag; let stand 10 minutes. Peel, seed, and slice peppers thinly.

Combine basil leaves, garlic, and salt in processor and blend to coarse puree. With machine running, gradually blend in oil. Transfer basil oil to small bowl. (Peppers and basil oil can be made 1 day ahead. Cover separately and chill.) Arrange proscuitto around edge of platter. Arrange cheese slices within circle of proscuitto and tomatoes within circle of cheese. Tuck in egg slices; top with pepper strips. Sprinkle salad with olives; drizzle with some basil oil. Serve with remaining basil oil.

Makes 4-6 servings.
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Old 08-06-2006, 09:58 AM   #4
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Wow, Daisy! Thanks for the link. There are lots of good-looking recipes there.
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Old 08-06-2006, 10:17 AM   #5
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I made lemon basil chicken for dinner the other day. Just buzz up the basil, garlic and lemon juice in the FP, then let the chicken sit in it for a while before cooking. Baste as you cook.

I just read a pesto mayo recipe somewhere that was served with salmon. I'll see if I can find it.

Its from a China Bayles mystery. (Dead Man's Bones) Here is a link to it. Looks tasty!
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Old 08-06-2006, 12:27 PM   #6
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If you make tomatoe sauce, you can add alot of fresh basil to it. Also good on tomatoes and cucumbers in a balsamic vinegar and oil dressing. You can puree it with some oil and freeze in a ziplock freezer bag. Dont know how harsh your winters are, but I end up potting mine and bringing it indoors to use over the winter.
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Old 08-06-2006, 12:37 PM   #7
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OK, little off topic sorry. Amber, do you find the smell of potted basil resembles um...catbox a bit? When I have tried to keep mine in the house it bugged me and I had to ditch it. Is there a different type I could put in the house?
You're only given a little spark of madness. You mustn't lose it. Robin Williams
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Old 08-06-2006, 12:51 PM   #8
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CommisaryQueen - you can freeze all the extra basil in your garden, either plain or as pesto. Plain-frozen basil will most likely darken, but it doesn't affect the taste at all.

I like to make large batches of pesto & freeze them in ice cube trays until solid, then bag them. They make terrific additions to winter pastas & soups.
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Old 08-06-2006, 06:38 PM   #9
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Every year I have so much basil that I print the below out and just tack it to a cupboard and I'm a happy camper all summer!!


BASIL PUREE: Process 4 c. loosely packed basil leaves & 1 cup EVO (or 8-oz. can tomato sauce) in a food processor till basil is finely chopped.
Spoon mixture into ice-cube trays (or whatever), & freeze.
Store frozen puree in freezer bags up to 6 mos.

Use anywhere you need a burst of fresh basil flavor: in soups, sauces, or salad dressings.
Thaw & add to marinades, or drizzle over grilled meats & vegies.

BASIL PESTO: Process -
4 c. loosely packed basil leaves
6 garlic cloves
1/4 tsp. salt
1 cup each: shredded Parm, toasted pine nuts, & EVO
in a processor till smooth, stopping to scrape down sides.
Spoon mix into trays & freeze.

Store mix. in freezer bags up to 6 mos. Makes 2 cups.
Pesto is great to have on hand for last minute hors d' oeuvres.
It can stand alone as a dip & also works as a spread for pizzas & sandwiches.

Process -
1 cup softened butter
2 garlic cloves till smooth.
1/2 cup firmly packed basil leaves, & pulse 3-4 times or till basil is finely chopped.
Store in Refrig up to 1 week, or freeze up to 4 mos. Makes 1 cup.
If desired, shape butter into a log; wrap, chill then freeze in log or cut in circles.

Serve w/hot crusty French bread or baked potatoes.
Toss w/hot, cooked pasta and Parm cheese or steamed veggies.

Try it on a grilled cheese w/mozz, sliced tomatoes, & crumbled bacon.

Process -
11-oz. log goat cheese
8-oz. pkg. softened cream cheese
2 cups loosely packed basil leaves
1/2 c. toasted pine nuts
3 garlic cloves
2 T. balsamic vinegar in food processor till smooth.

Chill 2 hrs. before serving. Makes 3 cups.

Store in frig up to 1 week, or freeze up to 4 mos.
Serve w/toasted pita chips or sliced baguettes.

Shape cheese mix. into logs, & wrap, slice chilled logs into 1/2" rounds. Dip rounds in lightly beaten egg; dredge in Italian breadcrumbs. Pan-fry over med-high heat in a little butter 1 min. or each side or till golden, & serve warm over a crisp, gr. salad.`

Process -
2 c. mayo
1 garlic clove - in processor till smooth. Add -
1/2 c. firmly packed basil leaves
1 T. grated lemon rind - pulse 3-4 times or till basil is finely chopped.
Store IN rig up to 1 weeks. Makes 2 cups. DO NOT FREEZE.

Even tho this won't freeze, it's unbelievably delicious w/a bowl of grape tomatoes or on a turkey sandwich.
Use it in place of plain mayo in deviled eggs or main dish salads; it's also great w/chicken, shrimp, or tuna.
Try it instead of tartar sauce the next time on favorite fish.

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Old 08-06-2006, 07:00 PM   #10
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I already do the puree and the pesto, but I've never tried the last 3 recipes.
But believe me, I will. All are duly copied and pasted into my recipe files, under sauces. Maybe I should have filed it under condiments.

Last year, I made some pesto with everything except the nuts (I know it's not really pesto without the nuts, but it's good stuff for cooking), and froze in ice cube trays.

Thing being, the basil plants I got this year ended up being cinnamon basil. That's not a bad thing, but the leaves are smaller, and the flavor a bit different. Kim's going to cut some for me tomorrow, and I'll see what I can do.
As much as I love basil, it drives my allergies crazy when I get my nose in the fresh stuff.

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