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>For the love of basil


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Hello hello! I hope you had a fantastic weekend!

Some of you (my family) may know that I’m not the biggest cook. I know how to cook, I just choose not to.

Or something like that.🙂

Actually, I do cook, just not as much as I should. I enjoy it when I do it. It’s the whole planning thing I have a problem with – I kind of fly by the seat of my pants with most meals, using what we have on hand. If we don’t have it on hand, I don’t cook.🙂

But when I find something that’s easy, I make it a lot. And when I find easy, quick, tasty food, I like to share it with you, my Squeezies. Cause I’m nice like that.

I showed you our basil plants last week and how they are absolutely busting with yummy leaves. I LOVE basil so it makes me giddy.

I figured I would show you some of my favorite (new and old) basil recipes. They are all SCRUMPTIOUS!!

First – one that works for a quick snack or a great dip for parties. It’s simple, it’s basic, and I didn’t realize how easy it was to make till a few years ago.

All you need to make pesto are four ingredients:

Pesto:

Grated Parmesan cheese
Extra-virgin olive oil
Garlic
Basil leaves

You’ll notice I didn’t mention measurements, and that’s because I kind of wing it when it comes pesto. Usually pine nuts are included in the recipe too, but I don’t LOVE nuts, so I don’t include them.

You just throw everything in a processor or chopper:

Mix to to the consistency and taste you desire. I like a lot of basil, so I do a lot of basil, a lot of cheese, a little olive oil, and an even smaller amount of garlic.

Taste and mix, taste and mix, till it’s where you want it. And then eat it with crackers:

pesto

It’s SO yummy!! Most pesto recipes will be more liquid – but I like a thicker consistency.

Oh em gee, I love this stuff.

Now that we have an appetizer, let’s move on to the main course.🙂

This Tomato and Basil Pasta is SO simple and good, you won’t believe it:

Fresh Tomato and Basil Pasta:

3 medium tomatoes, chopped (or one canned, like me)
1/3 cup chopped basil leaves
1 Tbsp. olive oil
1 clove garlic, minced (or one tsp, but I used one Tbsp.)
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. pepper
8 oz. rotini pasta, uncooked (I used about one and a half cups)
3/4 cups grated Parmesan cheese (I used about a cup)

This dish really couldn’t get any easier. You just mix everything together while cooking your pasta:

I had two cans of tomatoes in the pic, but you only need one. It’s more than enough.

Then mix with the cooked pasta, and top with some more Parmesan:

fresh tomato and basil pasta

SO GOOD!!! Oh my, this is so perfect for summer – it’s light, fresh, and pretty darn healthy. I use whole wheat pasta, so that helps even more.

You can also make it as a pasta salad as well, by just rinsing the pasta after cooking then refrigerating it. That one screams summer!🙂

Finally, I tried out a new basil cocktail and it may be a new favorite. Yes, I said basil cocktail. (Did I mention you’ll need to LIKE basil for these recipes?)

This one is a Bacardi Dragon Berry Strawberry Basil Lemonade:

I’m just calling it Strawberry Basil Lemonade for short.🙂

Strawberry Basil Lemonade:

2 parts Bacardi Dragonberry Rum
1 part lemon juice
1 part simple syrup (I used sweet lime juice instead)
3 basil leaves
3 strawberries (hulled and chopped)
2 parts Sprite (the recipe didn’t say how much to use but I did two parts)

To make this yumminess, muddle (crush) two basil leaves and two strawberries, then add those to the fresh lemon juice, simple syrup and Bacardi rum in a shaker with a bunch of ice. Add the Sprite and you’re done:strawberry basil lemomade

This is SO good, yummo!! It may be my new favorite summer cocktail. It’s going to be perfect for evenings out on the deck.

Again, if you don’t like basil and strawberries you probably won’t like it. But if you do I’m betting you’ll love it like me. The basil gives it just a tiny kick that is so different and fresh.

Did I mention yummy?😉

(Check out my simple Summer Beer recipe here, it’s another warm weather favorite. And I hate beer!)

So there you go – a plethora of basil recipes, all easy and sooooo good. All perfect if you grow your own basil – it’s such a kick to go outside to pick my own food. Love it!

I’m linking up to my friend Rhoda’s recipe party, in our Home May’d linky series:

You can start linking up your summer recipes Tuesday morning!

So are you a basil lovah like me? Can you believe I first tried it only a few years ago? Now I can’t get enough.🙂 Excuse me, I’m off to snack on some pesto!

About neno1050

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