Holy basil and sweet basil

Connie Veneracion

I cook, I shoot, I write. But I don't do the laundry. I don't like housekeeping very much either... (more about me)

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25 Responses

  1. Mella says:

    looking forward to your putanesca recipe. I’ve been planning to cook that since last week.

  2. Gail says:

    Connie, where did you buy your sweet basil plant? Meron ba nyan sa Sumulong Highway (ie. malapit sa min)?

    My sis and I tried planting parsley (from store-brought seeds), so far they’re growing but they’re still seedlings (their fate is unknown at the moment hehe).

    Is it possible to just have the basil planted on a pot? Having it on the ground like yours will just make it a temptation to my dogs (they like having “salads”). Have you tried sa pot lang? Did it thrive parin?

  3. A says:

    Miss Connie, may I please ask: what’s the difference in terms of flavour/aroma between sweet and holy basil? If I had to choose between the two, what would you suggest?

    Also, if I plant lemon basil, will the lemon aroma tamper/change the flavor of whatever dishes I make?

    Finally, how much are the seedlings? Also, are they available the whole year? I’m so sorry for asking too many questions, but you seem to be so knowledgeable about these things…

    Thank you!

    • Connie says:

      Holy basil is more piquant than sweet basil which in comparison is mild. Lemon basil is added to food precisely to enhance the flavor and aroma.

      Seedling at 3 pots/P100. Yes, available all year round.

  4. I have an interesting story to share, if you don’t mind.

    A coworker gave me a pot of sweet basil. I kept it around my cubicle until I could bring it home that day. My Indian coworker can’t help but notice the smell of the plant. After a few hours, he finally remembers and he tells me (excitedly) that the smell reminds him of Holy Basil which, apparently, is holy in India. They do not cook with it but it’s traditional for every woman in the household to walk around the Holy Basil every morning while doing some prayer or ritual.

    Interesting story, eh?

    • Connie says:

      Wow, interesting indeed. But I’m curious about not cooking with it since Indian curries often include basil among the ingredients and holy basil is endemic to the region.

      • Ralph says:

        Dear Miss Connie:

        i am intending to build a small garden containing herbs…mainly Holy Basil..i think i can buy the seeds online..can you give me some instructions about where should i implant the seeds?do they love suny places or dark places?
        Also after they grow..can i get seeds from the original plants..do i need more seeds to buy after i use the leaves of the original plants.

        Thanks alot


  5. Patrick Garcia says:

    Dear Ma’am Connie,

    Great blog!!

    I’m an agriculturist and a researcher at the Int’l Rice Research Institute. I’m currently studying the effect of a chemical abundantly found in Purple Holy Basils which can repel rice insect pests.

    Do you happen to know where can I buy or find seeds of the said plant here in the Phils? I would really appreciate your reply. I’ve searched many herbal shops and unfortunately they don’t know where to find these seeds. Here’s my e-mail just in case: charlepatrick_garcia@yahoo.com.ph

    Thank you Ma’am Connie. God bless you!

    • I thought you were the actor hehehe

      I don’t know about seeds but since we buy seedlings from Manila Seedling Bank, I think it’s safe to say that you can get useful information from them.

      • Connie, thanks for going into so much detail about holy basil. I have just heard it being mentioned on a Gordon Ramsay cookery program so thought I would find out more about it as I love the “normal” basil we get in the supermarket.

  6. wendel santos says:

    mam connie saan po pwede makabili ng halaman ng holy basil at thai basil thanks po

  7. Maggie says:

    Hi, Holy Basil, also known as Tulsi, is not Ocimum tenuiflorum, it is Ocimum sanctum. Thank you for the comparison of the many basils, and the hardiness of the Holy Basil – I will try to find some to plant in my garden in California!

  8. Fe says:

    Ms Connie, they say tulsi or holy basil leaves are good for acidity people, how true po? Thank you verymuch

  9. Gail says:

    Thanks! Pahatid ako kay Marc next week. Hirap kasi when buying sa grocery, nasasayang lang if I’m not using the entire package. At least with the plant, pitas lang when needed.

  10. Fai says:

    Thank you for posting this. I just found fresh holy basil sold in my oriental store but noody can tell me what it was called in english. My mom makes the most aromatic baked or lechon native chicken stuffed with lemongrass, scallions and holy basil (“sangig”as we call it in my dialect).

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