- Basil and its beneficial properties - the sacred grass of the East
- Passport plants
How does where grown as collected and stored basil
In our country the most common use basil or sweet (aka Regan) - Aromatic much branched annual plant of the family grubotsvetnyh. The root of the Basilica of branching, is superficial. The stems have a tetrahedral shape and height up to 60 cm. Leaves - about 5 cm long, oblong-ovate, with a few teeth, rough, spotted greenish-purple. The flowers are small, white, pink or purple on the tips of the stems are gathered in the brush. The fruit is divided into four brown nut which after maturation are separated from one another.
Basil in our country is the vegetable crops, it is cultivated in the Caucasus in southern Russia. In central Russia, it is grown in greenhouses or on the southern slopes of a small hill. In the wild basil is native to South-East Asia, Central America and Africa.
The harvest is collected during flowering in dry weather, cutting off the stems under the leaf growth. The grass is dried or used fresh. After that basil grows again and removed a second crop in the fall.
Dried basil in the shade, in places with good air circulation, at a temperature no higher than 35 ° C, laying a thin layer. Properly dried basil retains its natural color. Dried stems should have a good break, leaves and flowers - easily pulverized. Dried basil stored in glass, hermetically sealed container.
Another way to long-term storage of basil - salting, where the well preserved all its useful properties: the clippings are washed, obsushivayut and cut into small pieces, then put in sterile jars, pouring salt (per tablespoon of salt to five tablespoons of chopped herbs ).
The chemical composition of basil
The chemical composition of the basilica is insufficiently studied. The stems and leaves of the plant contain essential oil of basil, glycosides, saponins, tannins, minerals, vitamins (vitamin C, rutin, carotene - of which the body produces vitamin A), volatile, simple sugars. The fruit also contains large amounts of vegetable oils.
Essential oil of basil accounts for almost all of its beneficial properties. It contains eugenol (fragrance), methyl chavicol (as fragrance, which in large quantities is carcinogenic), linalool (a perfume with the scent of lily of the valley, camphor (a substance that can stimulate the heart and restore breathing) and some other substances.
The use of basil in cooking
Since basil is very pleasant spicy smell and not less pleasant, slightly salty taste of a cooling, it is widely used in cooking and food industries, adding as a condiment in salads and dressings for meat dishes, in soups and many other dishes. Pounded into powder dry basil leaves have a pleasant sour taste, they are often added together with other spices to various marinades, especially basil "loves" tomatoes. Basil seeds in some countries are used for flavoring beverages are added to meat and fish dishes. In the meat industry basil used for cooking sausages and canned goods.
Basil gets new flavor in combination with other herbs. For example, a mixture of basil, rosemary has a peppery smell thyme - enhances the sharpness of dishes. Originally combined with basil and other herbs, such as parsley
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, Coriander, mint
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Basil is a source of essential oils
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and camphor. The essential oil is used in perfumery and food industries, of camphor prepare drugs.
Basil as a drug
Basil has antiseptic, anti-inflammatory, antispasmodic (relieves muscle spasm of the internal organs and blood vessels), carminative (reduces the amount of gas in the intestines), wound healing and tonic properties.
The herb basil is a valuable source of vitamins C, P (they strengthen the walls of blood vessels), and carotene - of which the body is formed vitamin A, which affects the skin and its appendages (hair and nails).
Basil contains camphor the drug, so it is used as an aphrodisiac
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the oppression of the central nervous system, especially the oppression of the respiratory and circulatory centers. He also has a tonic effect on the whole body, so is used for general weakness after recovering from a serious illness.
Since basil and has anti-inflammatory properties, traditional medicine recommends it for inflammatory diseases of the gastrointestinal tract, intestinal dysbiosis, inflammation of the urinary tract.
Outwardly basil is used as a tincture for rinsing in diseases of the mouth and throat, lotions for the treatment of wounds. Infusions basil is also added to the bath.
Infusion of basil: tablespoons chopped dried herb pour a cup of boiling water, to insist 30 minutes, strain and drink a third cup three times a day.
Herbs basil has a wonderful taste and medicinal properties.