It's been cool and wet, not basil-friendly weather. Much of it has dampened off and died, but some has survived. I'll be re-planting this weekend, then praying for summer to finally arrive. Meanwhile, I found the coolest basil recipe: Basilcello. This will be a basil must-do this summer, right alongside my Green Goddess salad dressing (see this blog's earlier posts for the dressing recipe), and of course, simple-but-perfect mozz/tomato/basil salad.
Basilcello (Basil Liqueur)
20 basil leaves
500ml of 95% grain alcohol (190 proof)
600g white sugar
- Clean the basil leaves by wiping them gently with a damp paper towel. Do not wet or immerse the leaves as they can lose some of their oils and will start to blacken.
- Put the leaves and the grain alcohol together in a (preferably glass) bottle and close it tightly. Leave it to infuse for 15-20 days, mixing/turning it over 2-3 times a day. The liquid will start to get green immediately.
- After this time passes, bring the water to a boil in a pan, add the sugar and mix it until dissolved, but take the mixture off the heat before it comes to a boil. Allow the mixture to cool completely.
- Add the syrup to the basil alcohol and mix well, then filter out the basil leaves and other pieces. Close the mixture in a glass bottle, leaving it in a dark place for another 20 days.
- Serve the liquid as cold as possible, and store (for ready-serving) in the freezer or refrigerator. Before pouring, shake the bottle to make sure it’s fully mixed.