Wednesday, June 29, 2011

How To: Chop Basil

Picture by Liz Oxhorn
Mmmmm, I just LOVE basil.  I wish that I had a greener thumb because I use it all the thyme! (Sorry, I'm punny....can you tell?)

Basil can be used very simply in in a salad, mixed with mozzarella & tomatoes, or chopped to use in a sauce.  Of course, most people think that basil is only used for Italian cooking, but it is also widely used in Thai cuisine. Of course, that's purple basil...but that's besides the point.

Sometimes it is easiest just to rip the basil by hand instead of chopping, especially if you are going to cook it into a sauce.  But how do you chop basil easily when its called for?

First, gently pull the leaves off of the stems.

Picture by Liz Oxhorn
Next, stack the leaves on top of each other, with the largest leaf  on the bottom.  Gently roll the leaves along the long side until the leaves resemble **ahem** a cigar.

From the last picture above, continue to hold the bundled leaves with your right hand (or left if your not a lefty like me) and slice along the leaves from left to right (or right to left for you righties).

Picture by Liz Oxhorn
The result is long, thin strands of fresh basil.  If you want to have smaller pieces, simply run your knife through the stack again, cutting in the multiple directions.

Picture by Liz Oxhorn

Note: A special thank you to Liz Oxhorn who has helped me through the next few "how to" entries with her beautiful photography.  Thanks Liz for letting me use your talents on my blog!

No comments:

Post a Comment