You can make flavoured oil with basil. Wash several sprigs, dry, then stick in a bottle of extra virgin olive oil. It doesn't have to be the most expensive super-fruity kind. Leave for two weeks, then remove the basi because it will go slimy with time. Use this flavoured oil in your salads and in cooking--basil has a particular affinity with tomatoes. YOu can use this same principle to flavour oil with other herbs such as rosemary sprigs, or garlic cloves (leave unpeeled), or whole chilli peppers, or dried porcini mushrooms. Most dry herbs can stay in the oil for ever (though it pays to check the bottles from time to time when you are experimenting), it's mainly the basil that needs to be removed soon bcause it's fresh so it's got the moisture which goes slimy. You could make up a large quantity of baisl oil, then strain on your return from holiday and put in cute little bottles to give as gifts.
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