Friday, November 02, 2007

Black pepper basil beef - Lemony, peppery, vanilla and a symbol of love

I do not blog about herbs as often as plants and vegetables in WHB. This time, I'm going for
herbs in Weekend Herb Blogging (WHB) is at #107 at Kalyn's Kitchen. A common herb , fresh or dried, found in our kitchens - BASIL. There is already an abundance of knowledge and facts shared about basil, so how about some myths and folklore?

There are some ancient herbalists claimed that basil damaged the internal organs and the eyes while others argued that basil was good both as a condiment and for a variety of medical purposes. including relieving flatulence. These are just two opposing school of thoughts argued in herbal medicine through the years. Oh...most of us love basil, isn't it? We aren't going to believe anything with no scientific hardcore evidence. We will continue to like basil and use them appropriately in our dishes.


In folklore as in medicine, basil also has a reputation for both evil and good. Evil as in associated with the legendary reptile known as basilisk, whose breath and glance could kill. Good, as a symbol of love, cherished as a protection against witchcraft.


Black Pepper Basil Beef
Ingredients:
-Beef sirloin (slice and fillet against the grain)
-Handful of fresh basil
-Black pepper

Marinate:
-2tsp oyster sauce
-1tsp dark soy
-1tsp sesame oil
-1tbsp black pepper
-cornflour
-egg

Directions:
1. Marinate beef slices for at least 2hrs in the fridge.
2. Heat pan with oil at low-medium heat. Add in marinated beef and stir fry beef slices over medium-high heat till athey start to turn color
3. Add basil leaves to beef and complete cooking about 2mins
4. Dish up and serve immediately

In cooked recipes it is generally added at the last moment, as cooking quickly destroys the meal. In other food cultures such as in Taiwan, fresh basil leaves are added into thick soups (羹湯, pronounced geng tang). They also eat fried chicken with deep-fried basil leaves.

The Thais also use basil in stir-fries eg. in a dish like Kai Pad Bai Kaprow- Thai Basil chicken.


What are the basil flavors in this? Lemony...peppery...vanilla

Good basil flavor and fragrance, well-balanced with the black pepper marinated beef.

It's so yummy! You must try this. You don't have to get your ingredients from any specialty store.

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