Basil Crete, Ocimum basilicum
Wild basil, Ocimum basilicum, is also called king herb, soup basil, or brain herb. Back then, they said that only rulers were allowed to harvest it. They celebrated a mystical ritual during the harvest. The weed was a symbol of fertility for the Romans whereby the Egyptians embalmed their dead, and for the Indians, it is still sacred today.
How does wild basil taste?
Basil not only tastes fresh, spicy-sweet but also a little peppery with light anise flavors. You use your leaves either fresh or dried for seasoning.
How do you use basil?
Basil is an essential spice in Italian cuisine, and it refines a simple tomato salad, tomato - mozzarella, margarita pizza, and also salads. This excellent herb is the main ingredient to make the famous pesto alla Genovese. Put some soft butter, one clove of garlic crushed, breadcrumbs, grated lemon peel, salt, pepper, and one teaspoon of Ocimum basilicum, well mixed under the skin of a chicken before cooking in the oven. Simply delicious.
Its aroma also harmonizes with a sardine carpaccio.
It also flavors veal and lamb, or fish such as scallops and seafood. In general, it goes well with the following dishes: tomatoes, salads, salad dressings, as a pesto for pasta, eggplants, peas, eggs, potatoes, cheese, cucumber, curd cheese, olives, and rice.
You can also make yourself a king herb tea: pour 1 tsp of the herb in a cup with boiling water. It calms, is diaphoretic and expectorant.
Good to know
Add dried basil about 10 minutes before the end of the cooking time, and its aroma increases when cooking.
Ocimum basilicum- its origin
The Ocimum basilicum originally comes from the Middle East and came via Asia to Egypt and thus spread across the Mediterranean. The plant belongs to the Lamiaceae -lip family and is an annual herb. Even today, Ocimum basilicum grows in harmony with nature, and the island Crete offers excellent soil and ideal sun exposure.