This article provides an overview of basil, what it tastes like, its availability, alternative names, and of course what other ingredients make basil substitutes.
What is Basil?
Basil is a type of culinary herb that is used worldwide in many cuisines. The name ‘basil’ comes from the Latin word basilius and the meaning in Greek is ‘royal and kingly plant’.
Basil is native to India and other tropical regions in Africa and Southeast Asia, however, it can now be cultivated globally, due to its popularity.
What does Basil taste like?
Basil has a nice balance of sweet and savory. There are initially subtle hints of anise, pepper, and mint, but the aromaticness adds further sweetness.
Is Basil readily available in Supermarkets?
Basil should be readily available in supermarkets and local markets. It will be found in the fresh produce section with the other herbs.
What are some alternative names for Basil?
Basil is also known as great basil. In Western cuisines, the generic term ‘basil’ often also refers to sweet basil or Genovese basil.
In Asia, the most popular type of basil is Thai basil, which may also be simply referred to as basil. This variety has an anise and licorice-like flavor and is even slightly spicy.
What is a good substitute for Basil in recipes?
Luckily, there are a number of great substitutes for basil. These include:
- Italian Seasoning
- And of course the different varieties of Basic, such as:
- Thai Basil or Tulsi
- Sweet Basil
- Genovese Basil
- Dark Opal Basil
- Red Rubin Basil
- Lime Basil
- Lemon Basil