How To: Use basil after the season is over

Use basil after the season is over

We next visit the farm, where the real production takes place. They are growing some unusual items. Several herbs, like Shiso or Perilla (Perilla frutescens) are available in green or red varieties. They have a very unique flavor, almost nutty with a touch of citrus and a very aromatic flavor. Jerry uses them to make a green apple shiso ice. And you can use it as a salad green when it's young and actually use the seeds as well. Use the tips in salads and the seeds when they start to form, they make a very piquant flavor to add to marinated salads and Japanese food. They also have some unusual basils and they do something different with the basil once the leaves are gone. Let it come up to its' blooming stage so it develops a nice long stem. Leave the basil in the ground until it freezes. At that point the basil wood is harvested. Cut it off and hang it in the greenhouse, the plant dries, the leaves are all gone, then the woody stem is used for smoking seafood, mussels, black cod. It is a very nice way to infuse that great basil flavor and adds an earthy, woody component to the food. It's a nice way to use basil after the season is done. After you've made your pesto, strip all the leaves off then come back and harvest after frost.

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