I was in the chinese supermarket today and saw some beautiful Thai basil for which I had no need. So I bought some (of course). I love the slightly licorice flavor of Thai basil and am happy for any excuse to eat it or cook with it. I decided to try making a spread or dip and below is an attempt at a recipe to match what I came up with. It is really tasty as a dip with chips or crackers or super yummy as a spread on a sandwich with smoked salmon. Don’t be put off by the tofu – it gives it an amazingly rich flavor without any of the bad stuff in cream or mayonnaise.
- One cup of rinsed and plucked Thai basil.
- One clove of garlic, peeled. You can use more if you want, but I think it overpowers the other flavors.
- The juice of one juicy or two not-so-juicy limes.
- One tablespoon sesame oil.
- One tablespoon sunflower or nut oil.
- One cup of firm or silken tofu (I used firm, which I prefer).
- Three tablespoons of toasted sesame seeds.
- A dash of salt.
- Cracked red pepper flakes.
- A dash of cayenne pepper.
The cayenne and the red pepper are both optional if you don’t like spicy food.
Stairway to Heaven
- Put the garlic clove and the oils in a food processor and whizz around until the garlic is mostly a paste. You can do this in a mortal and pestle if you prefer, by the way.
- With the food processor running, dump in the basil and purée.
- Scrap the sides of the food processor to make sure everything is getting chopped up and run it again.
- With the food processor running, dump in the tofu.
- Take the lid off the food processor and give everything a stir. Add the lime juice (to taste) and whizz around again.
- With the food processor running, dump in the sesame seeds and purée until it is all creamy.
- Take the lid off of the food processor and taste. Add salt, cayenne and red pepper flakes (if using) and purée again.
This is what mine looked like (in a very glamorous Tupperware container…sorry for the lack of good food porn in this image):
If you make this, let me know what you think!