Tip: Put Basil in Your Green Salads

We think of adding basil to a salad when we're making a caprese salad. But it's delicious chopped up with lettuce, tomatoes, cucumbers, and whatever else you've got—a little zing that elevates a basic salad to something special...We don't have a basil plant growing in or near our house, so we buy big bunches of basil from the market. They're hard to use up before the leaves start to wilt and turn brown.

There's always pesto, and we put basil leaves on sandwiches and in cocktails, but we're really loving it in our salads right now. It's perfect with tomato, and with tomatoes being so ripe and delicious at the moment, any salad that combines the two gets high marks in our book. We cut five or six big leaves into ribbons and add them to the lettuce, tomatoes, cucumbers, and chopped carrots, then we dress it in a balsamic vinaigrette.

Yesterday, we added chickpeas to the mix and stuffed pitas with the salad and some herbed goat cheese for a simple vegetarian supper. The basil definitely added another dimension, the occasional sweet, herbal bite in an otherwise predictable salad.

Does anyone else add a little basil to your salad?

Related: Tip: Freezing Summer Basil

(Image: Flickr member lowjumpingfrog, licensed for use under Creative Commons)

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