One day while I was pruning the basil in my garden I looked down at the ever growing pile of trimmings at my feet and through, “It’s such a shame to toss all this amazing smelling basil.” What is a guy to do? It’s all just trash trimmings right? Well, at least that’s what I thought. But I was wrong! The slogan “waste not, want not” kept going through my head so I went on the hunt for ideas of what to do with all the buds and flowers I was trimming off. Turns out they are edible… and quite tasty at that. Below is a modified recipe I came across while looking for ways to utilize the whole basil plant. I hope you enjoy.
- 4 cups Sweet Basil trimmings (Buds, flowers, and leafs.)
- 8-12oz Roasted Red Peppers, Sliced (I use the ones the ones in a jar from Trader Joe’s)
- 1/2 Onion, thinly sliced (About 1/2 cup)
- 12 Cherry Tomatoes, halved (More to taste)
- 1/2 Roasted Almond, slivers(I get the roasted no salt one from Trader Joe’s)
- 2 tbsp Sherry Vinegar (Red Wine Vinegar and Balsamic work great too)
- 3 tbsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil
- 1-3oz of Goat Cheese (If goat cheese is not your style then use mozzarella instead)
- Salt and Pepper to taste
Once you have trimmed your basil make sure to wash them really good. You don’t want to find any bugs or dirt hiding between those buds. Then go through one more round of trimming, where you take all the leafs, buds, and tenderest stalks, tossing the older harder stalks. Depending on how much you like basil you will want to balance out the bud to leaf ratio. The buds tend to have a more powerful flavor than the leaves. If basil being the only leafy green in this salad is a little to much for you feel free to add a hand full of arugula in to change thing up a little.
Combine all ingredients accept goat cheese in a large bowl and lightly toss to bring it all together. Transfer to serving bowl and add goat cheese to the top. This is a light unique salad that brings excitement to almost any meal. Happy Cooking!Adapted From: http://westphoria.sunset.com/2011/07/21/basil-flower-salad/