Sunday, November 1, 2009

Basil 'Genovese'

Ocimum basilicum 'Genovese'
The first Basil leaves are ready for harvest from an August planting. This variety has fine flavoured shiny green leaves and originates from Genoa in Italy where the famous pesto sauce was first made.
I like Basil best during November before the really hot weather arrives which can alter the flavour and make it taste a bit rank. In the middle of Summer it prefers some shade and plenty of water to keep it happy. I don't bother to grow it during February but start off a new crop in mid March when the days start to return to as they are now.
Here is the basic Pesto recipe for those not familiar with it.

1 cup firmly packed Basil leaves......... 2 cloves crushed garlic
1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil..................sea salt
1/4 cup toasted pine nuts...................... 60g grated Parmesan cheese

Blend in a food processor all ingredients except Parmesan
Place blended green paste in a bowl and stir in Parmesan
Transfer to a jar and seal with a thin film of olive oil. Store in refrigerator....too easy.


  1. Your basil looks delicious. Thanks for the recipe.

  2. Ian, nothing tastes fresher than basil straight from the stem. Thanks for the great recipe for pesto, also.