It's time to make the most of the sunshine. At Pebble Soup HQ, all efforts are concentrated on growing herbs. Something which has never been met with great success, as seeds were expected to fend for themselves in conditions which are far from best. But not this year
This year, it's one herb at the time. Starting with Basil.
What to know if you want to grow basil
- Basil loves light and sun,
- There are dozen of varieties, Sweet basil being the most common, a classic, italian basil. Thai basil is more flagrant than sweet basil. Confusingly Greek basil is a variety from Sout-East Asia. Not all basil is green, purple basil is, yes purple and frilly.
- If the plant starts to flower, cut the flowers off as the leaves will get bitter if plant is allowed to flower.
- Water as soon as the soil gets dry which, in summer, is every couple of days.
- Harvest starts when the plant is 15 to 20 cm or 6 to 8 inches. Cut a stem above a set of leaves that will encourage growth. If you don't use it all, keep the stem in a glass of water. Basil doesn't like the fridge.
60g pine nuts
2/3 garlic cloves
100 to 125ml olive oil
In a food processor (or mortar) combine all the dry ingredients, then add oil until you get enough Pesto. Use on toasted baguette, pasta, on pizza dough etc...
Keep in the fridge in a jar, topped with olive oil.
15 leaves fresh basil
4 garlic cloves
1/2 tsp of ground pepper
In a food processor (or mortar) mix the basil, garlic then add the butter, pepper when mixed transfer to a small container. Use for pasta, garlic bread etc..
Garlic butter freezes well, keep in the fridge, put the container in a tupperware to avoid the garlicky smell to spread.