Basil comes in various varieties; we grow sweet Italian and a beautiful purple basil. This licorice-clove flavoured herb is fantastic in pesto, pastas, Thai curry dishes, bruschetta, salads - you name it!

Pesto - A Luxy favourite!
We make huge batches of this while the greens are in season and freeze in small quantities to use throughout the year.

1/2 cup finely chopped garlic scapes or 3-4 garlic cloves
1 cup chopped arugula, swiss chard, basil, spinach, kale or a combination
1/4 cup toasted almonds, pine nuts, pecans or walnuts
1/2 cup freshly grated romano or parmesan cheese
1 tsp lemon zest
3 tbsp lemon juice
kosher salt and pepper, to taste
1/3 cup olive oil

Add the garlic, greens, nuts, cheese, lemon juice, salt and pepper to the bowl of a food processor. Process to desired consistency. While running, drizzle the olive oil in a thin stream down the shoot and into the food processor.  Spoon pesto onto hot, cooked pasta and stir until combined. Alternatively, this can be used as a spread on bread, in sandwiches, on pizza, stirred into scrambled eggs and omelets, and as a dip.

2 medium or 1 large tomato, sliced 1/4 inch thick

2 cups shredded sharp white Cheddar (or you may use Gruyere)

1-2 cloves garlic, finely chopped

1 unbaked 9-inch pie shell
1 small onion, thinly sliced

Leaves from 3 small stems fresh basil, torn if large

4 eggs

1 2/3 cups light cream

6 tablespoons aged port or sherry (may be omitted, but reduce baking time by 5 minutes)

1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1. Preheat oven to 425F. Place tomatoes on a paper towel to absorb excess moisture.
2. In a small bowl, toss the cheese with the garlic. Sprinkle 1 1/2 cups of the cheese mixture evenly on the bottom of the pie shell. Arrange the onion on top of the cheese. Arrange the tomato in a single layer on top of the onion. Distribute the basil on top of the tomato and in the crevices between the rounds. Sprinkle the remaining 1/2 cup of cheese mixture on top.
3. In a medium bowl, beat the eggs thoroughly. Add the cream, port, and pepper and beat well. Slowly pour the egg mixture into the pie shell.
4. Bake for 20 minutes. Lower the oven temperature to 350F and bake for 35 minutes longer, or until the quiche is lightly browned on top.
5. Let the quiche cool on a wire rack for a few minutes before serving.
Serves 6 – 8.

For Dressing:
Small handful fresh basil
1 Clove garlic
Juice of 1/2 lemon
2 Tablespoons olive oil
Coarse salt to taste
For Roasted Tomatoes:
4 Large Tomatoes, halved
1 Tablespoon olive oil
2 Tablespoons Balsamic vinegar
Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper
4 Thin slices mozzarella (ideally fresh)
4 Large basil leaves
    1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
    2. While the oven is preheating, make dressing. Place all ingredients in a food processor and blend until the basil is chopped finely and the dressing has an even consistency.
    3. Arrange tomato halves on a non-stick baking sheet, with the cut side facing up. Drizzle oil and vinegar over tomatoes and season with salt and pepper to taste. Roast in oven until the tomato skins are blistered, about 20-25 minutes. Place mozzarella slices on the bottom halves of the tomatoes, and roast for an additional 5 minutes before removing from oven.
    4. Top one basil leaf on each mozzarella-covered tomato, and place the tomato tops back on the bottoms. Transfer to serving plates, drizzle dressing on tomatoes, and serve.

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