Basil Salt

http://greenlitebites.com/2012/08/14/basil-salt/

I saw this idea in Food Magazine the other day and HAD to try it immediately!

Basil is about the only thing I successfuly grew in my small container garden this year. I have 3 plants that just keep producing this favorite herb of mine. I also had a cilantro plant, my other favorite, but it didn’t make it past July. :(

Basil Salt finished

Anyway, this idea is super simple. Combine some fresh basil with salt and dry out in the oven. That’s it! Basil SaltI’m sure you can do it with any herb but basil is what the article showcased and it happened to be what I had on hand.

The result is awesome!

I now have this amazing green salt that even the husband was impressed with. I used some in last nights dinner (more on that soon) and everyone enjoyed it. I’m planning a few other fun ways to use the salt too.

Here’s how I made it.

  • 1/2 cup kosher salt
  • 1/2 cup packed fresh basil leaves

Preheat the oven to 275 degrees.

Combine both ingredients in a your food processor or bullet.

Basil Salt before

It will make a salty green paste.

Basil Salt after

Spread the paste on a cookie sheet.

Basil Salt on cookie sheet

Note: Do NOT line with aluminum foil. It will stick and you have to scrape it off which is more difficult with the foil. I learned my lesson.

Bake for 30 minutes.

Scape the dried salt chunks from the cookie sheet and run them back though your processor.

Basil Salt - done cooking

Note: Make sure it’s dry! You don’t want the salt sticking and dissolving to water droplets.

Basil Salt - all done!

Use the salt as you would table salt.

Last night I used it in a pasta dish (post coming soon.) I’m planning on topping some roasted tomatoes with it tomorrow. The magazine also had a lovely idea of giving it as gifts. Depending on how many herbs I can get at the farm this year I may make a few different kinds for to hand them out for the holidays!

Update: My Favorite ways to use this so far: On Popcorn, fresh tomato salad, and corn on the cob!

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16 Comments and 0 Replies

  1. Mo

    Would parchment paper be better than the foil? Also, what do you think about trying it with garlic powder instead of the salt?
    Mo

  2. roni

    I actually think just straight on the cookie sheet would be best but parchment is worth a try. As for the garlic, I think it may be a good add in once it’s finished but my fear of replacing the salt with garlic powder is that it will burn/brown in the oven but again, it’s worth a try!

  3. Jackie

    What a cool idea. I’m totally gonna try this. Will also fo it with rosemary, thyme, and cilantro as I’ve got allof the, growing in the green and have way too much. Thanks Roni!

  4. LDL

    Agreed, parchment is the way to go for the best preparation of this salt!
    My garden is filled with Basil that I remove at the end of the Summer to make Pesto and freeze the leaves to crumble into soups, etc. for the winter.
    I think that the Basil Salt will give me other opportunities to extend my Basil until I plant a fresh crop next Summer!

  5. Paulina

    I’ve put basil and salt on my homemade sweet potato fries and it’s amazing. I’ve never thought of this but it sounds like it would complement it perfectly.

  6. shirley coleman

    Followed instructions and even used more basil however there was no smell or taste of basil. The basil was fresh ans had a strong basil smell before I made this. What could have been the problem ?

  7. roni

    Shirly – bottle it and let it sit, mine has been getting stronger and stronger. Not sure the “science” behind it but I just used mine the other day and the basil smell knocked me over, it was way more potent then when I first baked it and amazing on my popcorn. :)

    Remember you are also on basil overload, at least your nose is. Give it a chance. I still use mine and am actually sad it’s almost gone. :(

  8. Gina

    This must be how they make all those garlic salts and whatnot that I see at the store, Genius! Gonna have to try this soon, it would make seasoning food so much easier.

  9. Linda

    The reason there is no flavor of basil in the salt is because of the heat from the oven – it extracts all the oil out of the leaves. I made this recipe last summer and had the same experience after having used fresh basil as well. Today I am going to try it again, but just letting it air dry before running it through the food processor a 2nd time. Will report back on the results, however, I’m sure this will make a big difference. Earlier this year I experimented with drying my herbs…what i did was air dry some (laid flat on a cloth over a laundry hanging device) and then I baked some in the oven on very low heat for just a few minutes until they were dry. In the case of thyme, basil and oregano all 3, NONE of the oven dried herbs had any flavor whatsoever in my opinion – maybe the tiniest bit, but nothing of any significance. Meanwhile the air-dried ones retained a LOT of the flavor. For the record, I did not try drying in a microwave, as I don’t own one as I have serious questions about negative affects of microwaves on food.

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