I have a lot of thai basil growing in my garden. Any ideas on how to use the excess? (Maybe an asian-style equivalent of pesto?)

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12 Comments

QueenSashy July 22, 2015
You could make basil jelly... It is incredible. There are quite a few recipes on the Web.
 
Tony S. July 20, 2015
Ming Tsai does an Asian style pesto with grilled shrimp. Very good- http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/asian-pesto-with-grilled-shrimp-recipe.html
 
Annada R. July 20, 2015
Sorry, here's the recipe. https://food52.com/recipes/37173-basil-chesto-chutney-pesto
 
Annada R. July 20, 2015
Try this asian equivalent of a pesto and please let me know how your chesto turned out. Though in the above recipe, I used Italian basil, I have a feeling that thai basil chesto will taste great too.
 
plainhomecook July 15, 2015
I really liked this recipe for thai basil pesto. https://food52.com/recipes/33890-thai-basil-pesto-with-chili-garlic-shrimp
 
AntoniaJames July 14, 2015
Cold sauce: https://food52.com/recipes/5582-cold-sauce Perfect this time of year. Make double or triple batches -- it's so easy, there's no reason no to -- and freeze what you don't use right away. A real hidden gem here on Food52. ;o)
 
Hallie July 14, 2015
Thai basil is awesome in pretty much any stir fry in my opinion. It can also be blanched and frozen to use at a later date if you're worried about it going to seed soon.
 
cookbookchick July 14, 2015
Make basil vinegar or basil vodka. Very easy. You can find how-to recipes online.
 
dinner A. July 13, 2015
Another idea -- it can look really pretty mixed in to flower arrangements, particularly if you let the basil itself flower.
Otherwise, just use it as you enjoy it, and let the rest grow and look nice in your garden, without worrying about using it up.
 
PieceOfLayerCake July 13, 2015
If you decide to make a pesto, I would consider cutting it with some mild greens. Pure basil pestos are too powerful for me sometimes, so I'll often do half basil and half arugula. You could try making an Asian-style pesto with some ginger, scallion, arugula, chile, cashews and maybe a tiny bit of fish sauce to bring the salt and glutamates that Parmigiano often do.

Other than pesto, you could infuse some oil with its flavor. I just heat up some mild olive oil and steep herbs in it, strain it, than use it for drizzling.
 
dinner A. July 13, 2015
Vietnamese vermicelli noodle bowls are best with a pretty large heap of herbs. Restaurants in the US usually serve them with just a sprig or two, but in Vietnam you often get a separate plate with your pile of herbs to add. I like a mixture including some or all of thai basil, mint, cilantro, shiso, and rau ram.
 
Greenstuff July 13, 2015
I'd suggest you be careful. Asian basils are more intense than Italian. One year I had a lot of Thai basil and did the sorts of things you're asking for. It put me off ALL basil and all pesto for several years.
 
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