Types of Basil:
Thai Basil, Sweet Basil, Lemon Basil, Holy Basil
Basil comes in many varieties. It usually has oval shaped leaves with pointed tips and lightly serrated edges. Basil is considered the "king of herbs" by many chefs. It is often used in Italian and Southeast Asian cuisines. Basil has been known to help with headaches and rheumatoid arthritis. It is a good source of vitamin A, magnesium, calcium, iron, potassium and vitamin C.
Used as a condiment, in sauces such as pesto, stir fries, pastas, salads and sometimes found accompanying fruit.
The leaves should be spring green to deep green and should not be wilted.
Fresh leaves should be washed and dried. When basil is cooked it is usually added last, because it looses flavor the longer it is cooked. Dried basil has lost most of its original flavor and in most cases can not be substituted for a recipe calling for fresh basil.
Basil can be kept in a plastic bag in the fridge for about 3-4 days. When storing in the fridge make sure the leaves are completely dry, moist leaves will considerably reduce the storage life. Basil can be stored in the freezer for much longer than in the fridge, after being blanched first.