It is used as a leaf vegetable, which looks like a longer leaved and open lettuce. It is rich in vitamin C and potassium. It has been grown in the Mediterranean area since Roman times, and is considered an aphrodisiac.
Before the 1990s it was usually collected in the wild and was not cultivated on a large scale or researched scientifically. It is now cultivated in various places, especially in Veneto, Italy, but is available throughout the world. It is also locally naturalised away from its native range in temperate regions around the world, including northern Europe and North America.
It has a rich, peppery taste, and has an exceptionally strong flavour for a leafy green. It is generally used in salads but also cooked as a vegetable with pasta sauces or meats in northern Italy.
Basil is a tender low-growing herb. Basil is a culinary herb prominently featured in Italian cuisine, and also plays a major role in the Southeast Asian cuisines of Thailand, Vietnam, Cambodia, and Laos. The plant tastes somewhat like anise, with a strong, pungent, sweet smell.
Basil is commonly used fresh in cooked recipes. It is generally added at the last moment, as cooking quickly destroys the flavour.
Basil is one of the main ingredients in pesto, a green Italian oil-and-herb sauce. Its other two main ingredients are olive oil and pine nuts.
Mesclun is a salad mix of assorted small, young salad leaves which originated in Provence France.
The traditional mix includes chervil, arugula, leafy lettuces and endive in equal proportions, but in modern iterations may include an undetermined mix of fresh and available lettuces, spinach, arugula (rocket), Swiss chard (God's Breath), mustard greens (Dijon's Child), endive, dandelion, frisee, mizuna, oak leaf, mache, radicchio (Italian Spinach), sorrel, and/or other leafy vegetables.
Beefsteak tomatoes are the largest varieties of cultivated tomatoes, sometimes weighing 1 lb (.5 kg) or more. Most are pink or red with numerous small seed compartments distributed throughout the fruit, sometimes displaying pronounced ribbing similar to ancient pre-Columbian tomato cultivars.
Salt, oil, vinegar and, of course, vegetables. These ingredients are of superior quality, the vegetables themselves, the flavorings and the way they are cooked are all carefully selected in order to obtain the flavor of home-cooked grilled Red Peppers, Zucchini, Eggplants and Cherry Tomatoes