Both cinnamon basil and Thai basil are common ingredients in Thai cooking. If you’ve ever eaten Italian food — in other words, if you are human — you know all about Italian sweet basil. Thai basil will work in place of holy basil as long as you remember how sweet it is. Aside from its use in Thai cooking, you can use cinnamon basil in sweet dishes where it can stand in for sweet basil and for cinnamon. You can usually find Thai basil at a well-stocked grocery store or your local International or Asian market or grocery store. Basil, independently from its variety, is a healthy food that you want to add to your diet, as discussed in this study from the University of Illinois. Visit our sister site PepperScale. But its hardy leaves stand up especially well to cooking—their flavor infuses readily into food and the leaves don't wilt quite as much as Italian sweet basil's would. Paella Rice: Bomba vs. Arborio You should also use it in Taiwanese sanbeiji. Discover 500+ spicy recipes and hundreds of pepper profiles, comparisons, cooking tips + more. Hey there! Some comments may be held for manual review. Like many home cooks, I'm most familiar with plain ol' sweet basil, whose wide, tender, green leaves make their way into the majority of the Italian and Mediterranean dishes we make at home or order out. But Thai basil adds something so special, it’s worth seeking out at well-stocked grocers and specialty markets — or planting in your backyard this spring. 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. There are two varieties of holy basil: a white one and a red one. Creating a fresh pesto or caprese salad is always a good idea. You are here: Home / SPICEography Showdown / Thai Basil Vs. Holy Basil: SPICEography Showdown. Like Italian sweet basil, fresh Thai basil leaves should have a bright color and a not-droopy demeanor, and they don't take too well to drying, so take the time to seek out fresh versions. All Access Digital offer for just 99 cents! Both are pungent, which means that either will work if all you want is an intensely aromatic herb with a basil note. It's a versatile herb, though, and good to have on hand for a punchier caprese or ratatouille, but its true boon is the anise intensity it brings to East and Southeast Asian dishes from Thai coconut milk curry to Taiwanese three cup chicken. Sweet Basil is often one of the last ingredients to be added into the recipe because of this, so keep this in mind when playing around with Sweet Basil in the kitchen. Stay up to date on Bay Area and Silicon Valley news with our new, free mobile app. That said, cinnamon basil and Thai basil will not give you exactly the same flavor profile. Thai basil will give you a strong aromatic note but none of the spiciness that comes from holy basil. Those beautiful, floppy green leaves are a key ingredient in Italian cuisine and the distinctive, main ingredient in Genovese-style pesto, without which there would be no reason for living. Use it in seasonal fall dishes that feature squash or pumpkin. As an Amazon Associate, we earn from qualifying purchases. The leaves of both are hairy and more delicate than the leaves of Thai basil. I'm using my little corner of the internet to explore everything I love and I'd love for you to join me! If all you've ever known is Italian sweet basil, you'll may be surprised by its crisp pungency that plays particularly well with Southeast Asian food. It’s got a stronger flavor than that of it’s sweet basil cousin with more of an anise flavor. This type of basil is most commonly used in Italian foods and offers a subtle earthiness and herbal sweetness to dishes that help round out the flavors with some complex but slightly subdued notes. Here's how it differs from Thai basil -- and here's why you need some of that, too. [Photograph: Alyss, Flickr. As its name suggests, cinnamon basil gives a cinnamon-like flavor to your food in addition to some of the notes that you would expect from basil. Its leaves are sturdier and stand up to heat better than those of Italian basil, so it can be added during cooking versus as a finishing touch. These are the crispiest, most flavorful roast potatoes you'll ever make. With purple stems whose color intensifies as the plant grows larger, Thai basil's leaves are sturdier than floppy sweet basil, and its slim, pointed shape more closely resembles mint than its Italian cousin. Holy Thai basil is also known as kra phao is among them. The second most likely variety to pop up in recipes — or menu descriptions — is Thai basil. It's great with green curry, too. Thai basil is wonderful eaten raw, slivered, and added to salads, both your plain old cucumber-tomato salad or something meaty like northern Thai larb. Thai basil’s flavor profile blooms in Southeast Asian wok-preparations. Holy basil brings another flavor profile to the table in that it is intensely spicy, so much so that it is sometimes referred to as hot basil. Genovese basil (Ocimum basilicum) is also Italian basil or sweet basil. Sweet Thai Basil (O. basilicum var. Try this Sausage Caprese Stuffed Shells or this Caprese Turkey Burger with Balsamic Basil Mayo if you’re looking for that classic basil and tomato combination. Get Morning Report and other email newsletters. Indeed, even or such a large amount of laves you need to have (… If Italian basil is all you have, go ahead and use it in Southeast Asian dishes, perhaps supplementing it with some fresh mint. Thai basil has small, narrow leaves, purple stems, and pink-purple flowers. The flavor is more like a combination of black pepper and clove than like the sweeter notes of Thai basil. Whereas Thai Basil wouldn’t work so well in Italian foods, the spiciness and strong flavor of the Thai Basil are really the glues that hold many of your favorite exotic dishes together. The Latin name for Thai basil is Ocimum basilicum; the Latin name for holy basil is Ocimum tenuiflorum. If basil is being used in your favorite pasta sauce, it is likely Sweet Basil. Thai basil is a must-have in any Asian dish such as curry or noodle dishes like pho. [Photograph: J. Kenji Lopez-Alt] Thai basil is wonderful eaten raw, slivered, and added to salads, both your plain old cucumber-tomato salad or something meaty like northern Thai larb.But its hardy leaves stand up especially well to cooking—their flavor infuses readily into food and the leaves don't wilt quite as much as Italian sweet basil's would. A recent graduate of the City University of New York's journalism program, Lauren was born, raised, and still resides in Brooklyn. It is important to note this fact since some resources claim that they are the same plant. Sorry, your blog cannot share posts by email.

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