May the roof above us never fall in
And may we good companions beneath it never fall out.

~Irish blessing

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

End of Summer: Hey Pesto

The basil grown from Franchi seed has done so beautifully this summer. It's mostly planted around the base of potted tomatoes, and I've been pinching off the emerging flowerheads for a few weeks now, so I decided it was time to do some harvesting for winter storage. 

Since we have a warm, north facing courtyard it extends the season, and last year we had basil well in to May. They need a good chop though so I cut all the tall stems to about half their length.

So to prepare to freeze: Pick off all the leaves and wash and dry using a lettuce spinner.

Process with some olive oil in a food processor, so that all the chopped basil is coated in oil.

Freeze quickly in small portions. I used an ice-cube tray this time, and wrapped it in plastic. I also filled a few small freezer bags and stashed them in the side of the freezer door for when I want a slightly larger quantity.

Mmm, smells like summer.

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