I hate wasting things. My dad jokes that I’m a Depression Era baby, and in many ways I probably am. This would somewhat explain my love of cooking, right? It’s cheap, and I get to use things up.
Sometimes when you buy things, they’re stupidly expensive. Or you have to buy them in greater quantity than what you need. Raise your hand if you hate buying basil at the store.
C’mon. $1.99 or more for a tiny little bunch?
Remember how it turned brown before you finished it off last time?
Don’t make me feel like I’m alone here. Raise up those hands!
Well, I’m done with that. For one thing, it’s spring, and my garden is in the process of being planted — which reminds me that I need to water my strawberry plants tomorrow — which means fresh basil whenever I want it all summer long. Once it matures by the end of June.
Until then, I have a new favorite treat. As with so any excessively cool things, this comes to me via Trader Joe’s.
Check it out. It’s perfectly chopped and measured fresh basil that’s frozen. And it’s less than a dollar for twenty teaspoons. I don’t get that much from the bunch I buy at the store, I can guarantee that.
Aren’t those cute little ice cube tray looking things? It’s possible I bought this to try just because it was so cute. And yes, I got te cilantro one, too. Gotta love the extra flavors.
You can’t quite see that I have one cube missing, but I do. Which means that I can attest to the yummy actual basil flavor from this -a concern before trying.
Not So Pesto
2 T olive oil
1 clove garlic, minced
1 t frozen basil
salt and pepper to taste
I made ravioli the other day but didn’t feel like making sauce. I was going to do just a little brown butter — totally easy — except that some how, some freaky way, we were out of butter in my house. And that NEVER happens.
As I was searching through the freezer for butter, I found my forgotten little basil gems and decided to put some basil on my ravioli. Which then turned into warming oil to melt the basil. Which then turned into not so pesto — which was totally yum.
Heat the olive oil, and add the minced garlic. Let it cook a minute or so, then add the basil cube. Stir with a spatula, and add just a tiny bit of salt and then some pepper to taste.
Were I not putting this on cheese ravioli, I probably would have also added some fresh Parm. Ok ok ok, so I forgot. It was super good without it. Even my husband was impressed, so shh don’t tell him this was my lazy way out of making sauce.
This made the perfect amount for our two servings of ravioli — just enough taste without overpowering the ravioli. And ummm yeah… it all disappeared (again) before I managed to take a picture.