Now that we're stepping into September,
it's time to harvest that abundant summer basil.
You can freeze your fresh basil and use it in winter soups!
Fresh basil leaves do not freeze well. They get brittle in the freezer and are not usable when defrosted.
Here's a great way to preserve the fresh flavor.
Start by removing the leaves and rinsing them well.
In your food processor, pulse the leaves with a large spoonful of minced garlic from the jar.
Before I had a food processor, I did this in my blender. It doesn't work as well,
but if you don't have a food processor you can do it that way.
Remove the stopper from the top of your food processor or blender.
While pulsing, stream in enough olive oil to create a smooth paste.
I freeze the basil paste in my mini-muffin pan, but you can try an ice cube tray, too.
You'll also need plastic wrap.
Cut a piece of plastic wrap a few inches longer than the muffin tin and lay it flat.
Starting in the middle, create an indent with a spoon.
Quickly and easily fill each opening with the basil paste working from the inside out.
Pop this in the freezer and chill for several hours or overnight.
Once frozen, lift the plastic and remove the "cubes"
Put basil cubes in a Ziplock bag and store them in the freezer.
You can take them out individually and toss them in soups or other winter recipes to
add richness and incredible flavor.