Ocimum basilicum; '"That delicious purple leaf" - Mel's Mum every week.
Use as you would normal basil, and how amazing is that colour? Purple basil is not as sweet as green, and has a stronger clover taste. It is highly aromatic, and can be steeped in vinegar or oil to add some crazy colour to your dishes.
Store on the kitchen bench with stems in a container of water. Don't keep in the fridge or wet, otherwise the leaves will blacken!
In the Kitchen
This pesto is especially delightful over grilled fish, shrimp, or chicken and is wonderful with rice, pasta, or steamed green beans.
2 cups fresh lemon basil leaves, rinsed and dried
2-3 cloves garlic, peeled
1/3 cup blanched almonds, lightly toasted
1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
1/2 cup olive oil
In a food processor fitted with a steel blade, process basil and garlic. Add almonds and cheese, then slowly add the olive oil. Process to get the desired consistency. Add more olive oil if desired. Makes about 1 cup.