I have managed to keep my little container garden alive for two weeks.  Not only, are my plant still alive, they are thriving.  Pretty exciting stuff, considering my previously unsuccessful gardening attempts.  Of course, I can’t take full responsibility for the garden.  My son has been instrumental in remembering to water the plants and we have both enjoyed watching the garden’s progress thus far.  While we are still weeks away from seeing any tomatoes or cucumbers, the basil plants are abundant.

I have been putting basil on everything the past two weeks.  It’s a great substitute for lettuce on a sandwich or added to a side dish of sweet corn, but my favorite use for basil is as a garnish for a fresh tomato sauce and pasta.  The recipe for the tomato sauce is below.  Enjoy topped with Thai, purple and Italian basil or whichever variety you have available.

Basil Garnished Pasta:
1 TB Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1 Roasted Red Pepper, 1/2 inch dice
1 14.5 OZ can of Fire Roasted, Diced Tomatoes
1 clove Garlic, grated
1/2 tsp Red Pepper Flakes
1/2 cup julienned basil (use a combination of Thai, Purple and Italian if available)
8 oz Spaghetti, cooked according to package directions

Heat olive oil in a saute pan over med-high heat.  Add red pepper, tomatoes, garlic and pepper flakes.  Stir to combine.  Cook over medium heat till warmed through and sauce has thickened slightly, about ten minutes.  Add cooked spaghetti to sauce in saute pan and mix together.  Remove from heat and place in two pasta bowls.  Garnish with chopped basil.

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