Exceptional Herb - Sweet Basil

The harmonization of tastes, the diversity of Thai food, and the many of Thai-herbs are a priceless heritage

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Seeds - Sweet Basil - Bai Horapha 5g

The Bai Horapa basil is a slightly sweet spice herb and tastes strongly of anise and licorice. They recognized the plant to reddish to dark purple stems and dark green leaves that are crossed by conspicuous veins.

In Thailand, bai horapha is eaten almost as a vegetable. It is used in large quantities, in whole leaves and sprigs, in many types of dishes, including curries, stir-fried dishes, salads and soups. Sweet basil is never cooked, but should always be given at the end of the cooking time to the dishes.

2,50 €

  • 0,03 kg
  • verfügbar / available
  • 8 - 12 Werktage / working days

Exceptional Herb - Sweet Basil


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Thai Sweet Basil (Bai Horapha): This thai variety of sweet basil provides the unusual basil flavor present in so many Thai dishes. Its leaves are deep green, smaller and not as round as Western sweet basil.

Sweet Basil – Bai Horapha

Thai Sweet Basil (Bai Horapha): This thai variety of sweet basil provides the unusual basil flavor present in so many Thai dishes. Its leaves are deep green, smaller and not as round as Western sweet basil. They grow on purplish stems, topped with reddish purple flower buds. Both leaves and edible flowers are sweetly scented with a mix of a distinctly basil scent and that of anise or licorice.

 

In Thailand, bai horapha is eaten almost as a vegetable. It is used in large quantities, in whole leaves and sprigs, in many types of dishes, including curries, stir-fried dishes, salads and soups. Sweet basil is never cooked, but should always be given at the end of the cooking time to the dishes.

 

It is also easy to grow and seed packets can be purchased from local nurseries or ordered online.

 

Sweet  Basil - Bai Horapha

Herbs of Thailand > Lemon Basil > organic > gardening > garden > healthier

Thai basil is a type of basil native to Southeast Asia that has been cultivated to provide distinctive traits. Widely used throughout Southeast Asia, its flavor, described as anise- and licorice-like and slightly spicy, is more stable under high or extended cooking temperatures than that of sweet basil. Thai basil has small, narrow leaves, purple stems, and pink-purple flowers.

Used plant part
Leaves; frequently, the entire herb (all aerial parts) is harvested. Best harvesting season is before flowering. Basil leaves should always be used fresh, as they lose most of their flavour within a few weeks after drying. However, in the Georgian spice mixture khmeli-suneli, dried basil is employed (see blue fenugreek).


The seeds of basil have some use as thickening agent in Thailand. In their outmost layer, they contain mucous substance that, on absorbing water, developes into a thick slime surface with an intriguing, opalescent blueish hue. While these basil seeds lack any taste or fragrance of their own, they contribute an interesting texture, both soft and (by value of the core) crunchy. They are often employed in liquid sweets or sweet drinks.

Culinary
Similar use is made of basil in the Far East; it is especially popular in Vietnam and Thailand. Every visitor to Bangkok who dared to try local cuisine will probably never forget the phantastic basil aroma that emanates from nearly every pot at the numerous foodstalls. The basic ideas of Thai cookery are revealed in gai pad kaprao, chicken with chiles and basil: Despite a searing and truly hellish hotness, the dish provides heavenly pleasures by its subtle basil odour.


When using basil in South East Asian recipes, one should consider that Thai basil tastes rather different from the Mediterranean herb predominantly available in the West. Also, care must be taken to choose the right basil; Thai cuisine is probably the only cuisine that uses three different basil varieties, each for its own purpose. All three basil varieties should be available in Thai food stores.


Thai sweet basil (horapha [โหระพา]) is mild and has a fascinating anise flavour somewhat comparable to tarragon, but more intensive. The flavour will not tolerate prolonged cooking. The herb is often sprinkled over Thai food immediately before serving, and it is very good in hot and sour Thai soups (tom yam [ต้มยำ], see kaffir lime) or curries (gaeng [แกง], see coconut); it should not be boiled but just steeped for a minute or two in the hot foods.


Thai sacred basil has a pungent taste that is often described as peppery although I find it more like allspice. It is most often used for stir-fries, for example the above-mentioned gai pad bai kaprao, as some cooking is necessary to develop its flavour best. I often find that the kaprao sold in Asian groceries is of poor quality; obviously, it suffers from the transport. Mostly for that reason, some cooks will often substitute kaprao by horapha and change the cooking time accordingly.


There is a third basil variety in Thailand: Thai lemon basil, also known as hoary basil. It has a nice lime flavour and is mostly eaten raw as a garnish; its fresh citrus note goes best with fish.

Exceptional Herb - Sweet Basil

Thai Sweet Basil (Bai Horapha): This thai variety of sweet basil provides the unusual basil flavor present in so many Thai dishes. Its leaves are deep green, smaller and not as round as Western sweet basil.

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