Saturday, April 07, 2007

Basil and Basil for GBP


GBP – Green Blog Project. When I started Blogging last October I was not aware of this event. I have rarely attempted growing anything during the cold North-East winter months before except for my clan of indoor plants. By the time I was aware of GBP winter had planted a firm foot and I had no clue how to start an indoor veggie patch.

I already had the Tulsi or Holy Basil plant which I had acquired as a tender sapling from the Hindu temple sometime last September. I was not sure it would survive the harsh winter and was very careful to move it around to give it its dose of sunlight during day and kept it away from the cold window at night. It survived “Touchwood”. Those Tulsi leaves help me a lot in preparing a concoction for my daughters cold during the Winter.

The other Basil Plant came into my life a couple of months back when D brought back a pack of basil with roots on from the Supermarket. He promptly planted it and I guess she liked our family because she decided to stay and spread her roots. It’s almost Spring now and I love to see both these plants who made it through the cold winter.

With the Tulsi leaves I make a brew, just like my Ma did when we would be down with the cold. I make my daughter sip onto it much to her chagrin whenever she has a bout of cold

Take a cup of water in a small pot or kettle. Put 5-6 Tulsi leaves, 4 Cardamom, 4 Cloves and a spoon of Palm Sugar or Mishri for a cup of water. Let the water simmer and come to a boil. Lower the flame and let it sit on the stove till you get a pale brown almost golden brew. If you can, sip onto the hot brew. For children give them spoonfuls of this brew at temperature they can withstand
Check out this site for more benefits of Tulsi

The recipe with the other Basil comes in my next post. Watch out before 10th April and rush your entries too
GBP hosted by Mandira of Ahaar for Winter-Spring and created by InjiPennu of Ginger & Mango. A wonderful effort and Thanks to both of them for making us go Green

Trivia: Tulsi is a perennial in tropics but it can endure a temperature as low as 18C. In regions where temperature drops below freezing in winter, it is best to grow it indoors in a greenhouse or on a windowsill


  1. Lovely pic there, with the katori and all that. No Bong connection, btw, just a foodie one!

  2. Good to see your Tulsi plant surviving the winter, mine could not survive even the Delhi winter. Managed to get some Basil leaves from Super market, for Thai curries.

  3. Basil plant looks nice and I am sure that homemade cure for cold works wonders.

  4. Thanks for the link of Tulsi... I didn't have it but used to have a big bush of Thai Basil (plus sweet Basil). The former couldn't make it this year even already potted and stayed in the house. The latter kind of hanging there... Sandeepa, you have a green thumb! Your herbs really look flourishing!

  5. its so good to see ur tulsi plant surviving in cold winter sandeepa. i have got seeds of black tulsi which we call krishna tulsi from my ma's garden. havent sow them yet.

  6. That's one luxurious Tulsi plant you have there S!Love the photo.:))

    I tried growing Red radishes but ended up with mint!:D

  7. Sandeepa, your plants look ssgood! I have just read about Tulsi a few days back, and really wanna try it out.

  8. Sandeepa Basil and Tulsi plants look so green and lovely. The Tulsi tea is very soothing during a cold, DH would very much love to have it but I don't have a Tulsi plant.

  9. Sandeepa, thanks so much for participating in Green Blog Project. The tulsi survived the winter. I'm impressed! Looking forward to the other entry too.
    Tomar charchari dekhe ami aajke charchari banachi. Will let you know how it turns out.
    Also, the mom's hangout sound like a great corner. I'm forwarding this link to my friends and relative who are young mothers.

  10. Love the picture. I use to grow tulsi at home in CA but after coming to VA never planted. But I planted methi and dhaniya, my son plucked everything so I have to wait some more time :D.

  11. Tulsi is a marvellows plant, na. The Tulsi chai always helps me plant looks so beautiful and lush. Very very pleasant and green :).

  12. Sandeepa,

    Is there a particular species of the plant that is the sacred tulsi? I know that there are many varieties of basil, I use to have 4 different types planted - Thai basil, purple basil, star anise and lemon basil.

  13. I love the home remedy, San. Am saving this for future use! :)
    It's amazing how many such remedies we have in India. My mom got baje (bach in Hindi) from India for M's cold. It's amazing how well that worked.

  14. Hey Everyone,
    My prev Tulsi plants did not survive the wainter, its only this time that it made it "TOUCHWOOD"

    Radish into Mint -- what a hybrid Asha ;-)

    cynthia -- The Tulsi also known as Holy Basil.
    This is what Wiki has to say

    "Its(Holy basil's) aroma is distinctively different to its close cousin, the Thai Basil which is sometimes wrongly called Holy Basil, in shops and on the internet, but they can be distinguished by their aroma and flavour. Holy Basil is slightly hairy, whereas Thai Basil is smooth and hairless, also Holy Basil does not have the strong aniseed or licorice smell of Thai Basil; and Holy Basil has a hot, spicy flavor sometimes compared to cloves.

    Vani -- What is Baje ?

  15. I'm so envious that your basil plant made it through winter! I am totally hopeless with plants, I don't know why they become somewhat "invisible" to me, so they often die because I forget to water them, since I don't notice them half the time, haha! :) lovely pictures, by the way! I might try your cold remedy, too!

  16. Wow, i love tulsi! have not been able to find any to grow in my garden - am glad yours survived and is doing well under the circumstances; they were so hardy and ubiquitous when i was growing up in india, and i miss it now - especially its medicinal value .
    p.s: thanks for stopping by Sandeepa, I am quite excited about finding your Desi Momz Club:)

  17. Sandeepa what the name of ur other tulsi? thats the one we use for italian cooking right ?
    I am feeling a bit feverishtoday and was longing for my mother's herb tea with dry ginger and tulsi et al..u re making me more homesick now :(

  18. Yes my mom used to make this too but without the cloves...very good for sis doesn't like this so my mom gives her tulsi leaves to chew. Nice to see ur tulsi plant Supriya.

  19. Sorry Sandeepa.. I mentioned u as Supriya..Just came from her blog..

  20. Sandeepa, How did you manage to get so healthy looking Tulsi. I did manage to get the basil last year but not Tulsi? Tulsi water is also a great remedy for headache and migrane. Where did you get Tulsi plant from? I need to try my hands on them again.

  21. hey Sandu, the plant has come out so well. really touchwood!!
    nice info too!! I am soon going to workout on my tulsi plant.


  22. lovely tulsi plant, here we don't have problems of sunlight,but to find one sunny spot in the flat is!!!. This time i managed to survive my plant for almost 3 years!! :).

    By the way loved reading you blog and nice recipes too!

  23. You always bring out the best of herbs and spices. Loved the nice description about Basil. My mother always gave us hot water with basil leaves during cold winter..

    Nice to see the simple yet very powerful recipe..


  24. Hey Sandeepa,

    Your plants are awesome. I have a tulsi plant at my place too (in SJ,CA). Winter is around the corner, so some tips to maintain the plant will be helpful. Also, does one need to supply manure/food to the plant from time to time? If yes, where can one get it from? and what is it called in the market?

  25. Basil has healthy benefits. It can be used to make concoctions as flu remedies. Anyway, I would love to try making this project as well. I really appreciate your efforts in sharing the recipe to us. I look forward to learning new things from you.

  26. One good thing about herbal medicine is that, it can be used for children. Tulsi leaves can be brewed to cure cough, cold and even fever among kids.


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