Basil, or Sweet Basil, is a common name for the culinary herb Ocimum basilicum, of the family Lamiaceae (mints), sometimes known as Saint Joseph's Wort in some English-speaking countries.
Basil, originally from India, but thoroughly familiar to Theophrastusand Dioscurides, is a half-hardy annual plant, best known as a culinary herb prominently featured in Italian cuisine, and also plays a major role in Southeast Asian cuisines of Indonesia, Thailand, Vietnam, Cambodia, Laos, and the cuisine of Taiwan. Depending on the species and cultivar, the leaves may taste somewhat like anise, with a strong, pungent, often sweet smell.
Basil green photo (c) Flora Export S.G. Israel LTD
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