Pesto is one of those foods that’s so quick and easy to make and can be eaten with almost everything from smoked salmon and pesto on toast, pesto pasta, baked sweet potato & pesto, stuffed aubergine rolls to tortilla chips dunked in pesto. The list is limitless.
Basil 🌿 is a nutritional powerhouse being rich in the fat soluble antioxidant beta-carotene, iron, calcium, magnesium, manganese, copper and vitamin K.
Basil essential oil, (the aromatic part of the plant that is its immune system) has anti-inflammatory, antimicrobial and carminative properties. It is the Eugenol compound within the essential oil that gives basil its anti-inflammatory properties by blocking the enzyme cyclooxygenase (COX) that mediates inflammatory responses. It’s carminative properties ease bloating, gas and digestive issues. A study showing that the essential oil inhibits many resistant pathogenic bacteria such as Staphylococcus, Enterococcus and Pseudomonas is encouraging for its use as an antimicrobial.
Don’t bother with shop bought pesto that’s full of inflammatory oils and additives. Make your own. Head here for my Pesto recipe.