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Basil Bonanza

August 2, 2018

Tomorrow is City Blossoms' Basil Bonanza, a community potluck of basil-themed dishes. My husband and I are looking forward to attending. We're bringing summer squash and basil pasta, made with tromboncino squash and green Italian basil from the garden. I'll just serve the Parmesan cheese on the side so that everyone can enjoy the dish, no matter their dietary preferences.

 

These two tromboncino squashes (you can see the yellow blossoms still attached) will make for yummy basil-y pasta. I'm waiting to harvest them until tomorrow, to prepare the dish fresh for the party.

 

 

I also wanted to bring a dessert and I went with something that I could make ahead: coconut and holy basil ice pops. To make the ice pops, I picked and washed a bunch of holy basil and steeped it in two cans of coconut milk. First, I brought the mixture to a boil over high heat, then I turned it down to low to simmer gently for about 20 minutes.

 

Next, I carefully poured the mixture into a blender, sweetening it with about half a cup of sugar. I wanted the ice pops to be sweet, but not too sweet. I poured the resulting mixture through a sieve to remove any chunky bits before pouring it into the ice pop molds of my childhood: paper cups.

 

 

12 paper cups fit perfectly inside an 8-inch square pan and the coconut-basil mixture filled the cups to about a quarter-inch from the top. It's like I planned it that way! I stretched a piece of plastic wrap across the top of the pan, which holds the sticks in place as the pops freeze. 

 

The hardest part now is not eating them all before the party.

 

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