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    You are in: Home / Community Forums / Cooking Q & A / Basil Party
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    Basil Party

    Saint Paul Andrew
    Thu Sep 20, 2012 2:14 pm
    Newbie "Fry Cook" Poster
    I wonder if I could get some suggestions for a (birtdhay) dinner party menu for 6 adults that would incorporate lots of fresh basil? I have one basil plant in a pot on my deck which has grown to be three feet tall and very bushy, so I want to use up some of it, and I thought that since I have a group coming over that might be a good time to use it up, but how? I'm a pretty experienced cook, but I don't entertain very often.
    Thu Sep 20, 2012 2:30 pm
    Forum Host
    Pesto sauce would use up the basil - good with pasta, or I have this scallop recipe that is nice, Scallops With Creamy Pesto

    And I've wanted to try this for some time,
    Thu Sep 20, 2012 5:05 pm Groupie
    Pesto Alfredo Sauce has proven very popular when I take it to potlucks or feed it to groups.

    I've tried several different pesto recipes and all of them worked. But the best results are from pesto made purely from basil without spinach (often added to stretch the more expensive basil).

    Chunks of chicken breast or shrimp work to make it a main dish rather than a pasta side dish.
    Thu Sep 20, 2012 5:44 pm Groupie
    Basil pound cake. Use dried basil. I'd post the specific recipe, but don't have it any more. The basil adds a pleasant anise-like flavor that's very mild. Get some ripe peaches and macerate them in a fresh basil-infused syrup to serve on top of the cake with a dollop of whipped cream, maybe a chiffonade of fresh basil as a garnish.
    Or, basil cupcakes.

    Got figs? This is a good starter. Fresh Figs Marinated in Sherry With Aged Goat Cheese and Basil

    Of course, there all those variations on the classic Caprese salad and bruschettas.

    You could also grill some fish and serve it with a dollop of basil butter on top, or make a lemon granita or sorbet with some basil in it. Or a chilled zucchini or cucumber soup with fresh basil.
    Chicagoland Chef du Jour
    Thu Sep 20, 2012 7:24 pm Groupie
    This is delightful! icon_arrow.gif Cheese, Herb & Tomato Tart
    Thu Sep 20, 2012 9:13 pm Groupie
    I made Best Tomato Bruschetta a few days ago, and it was wonderful; using the basil and tomatoes from my garden.
    Fri Sep 21, 2012 5:34 am
    Forum Host
    Every summer when my basil gets out of hand, I always make it a point to make a batch of basil vinaigrette - it uses a boatload of basil, and it's SO flavorful:

    Basil Vinaigrette
    from the Rebar Modern Food Cookbook
    2 garlic cloves
    1 1/2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
    2 tablespoons honey
    1/4 cup red wine vinegar
    1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
    1 1/2 ounces fresh basil leaves
    1/2 teaspoon salt
    1 1/2 teaspoons cracked pepper
    1 cup olive oil
    Combine all of the ingredients, except the olive oil, in a food processor (I use a blender and that works just as well, I’ve found.) and blend. Slowly add olive oil in a slow, thin stream until thick and creamy.
    Season to taste and serve. Can be refrigerated up to three days.

    via Patent and the Pantry
    Fri Sep 21, 2012 9:56 am Groupie
    If you have some left after all the cooking... a nice bunch of basil in a clear vase is a pretty table decoration. And it smells like summer. icon_cool.gif
    Fri Sep 21, 2012 8:24 pm
    Forum Host
    And this might not use up a lot of basil, but I rather think it might justbe mandatory Cucumber Basil Martini
    Fri Sep 21, 2012 9:47 pm Groupie
    I'll take one of those, for sure!
    Saint Paul Andrew
    Thu Oct 04, 2012 7:30 pm
    Newbie "Fry Cook" Poster
    Thanks! I did end up making a double batch of pesto with pine nuts. The basil keeps growing so I keep making more.
    Saint Paul Andrew
    Thu Oct 04, 2012 7:32 pm
    Newbie "Fry Cook" Poster
    Thank you - that looks great, I'll try it!
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