Basil is one of the few herbs that enhances the flavor. Always add last, overcooking kills the flavor. My great aunt put basil in all kinds of things. I once saw her put it in her hot oatmeal. I ask her why and she said she was a little conjested and this was as good a way as any to break up the phlegm. Basil has particular phlegm breaking flavonoids and volatile oils. In the fall she would put a few stalks and leaves in a bottle of vinegar and in a bottle of olive oil. She used these through the winter. The vinegar is great with greens and on salids. The olive oil makes a wonderful cooking oil. You can dry basil but never freeze it. I tried it and it turns into a useless mess. Not to worry, dried basil will keep for months and it is easy to keep a couple plants growing on the window seal through the winter. (found here)
Fresh Pesto Recipe
2 cups fresh basil leaves 4 garlic cloves, peeled and crushed 1/3 cup grated parmesan cheese 1/3 cup pine nuts and or walnuts 2/3 cup extra virgin olive oil salt & pepper to taste
Cook the garlic cloves with their peels on in a skillet over medium high heat until the garlic is lightly browned. Let the garlic cool, and remove the skins. Toast the nuts in a pan until lightly brown. Use a mortar and pestle or a food processor to mix the ingredients. Serve with pasta, over baked potatoes or spread over toast.
By Harvey Robinson (years to your heath.com)