Growing out Botanical Interests’ Holy Basil
One of my favorite Thai dishes is ka prao gai (holy basil chicken.) I typically make this minced chicken with Thai basil. However, the authentic version is made with ‘Thai Holy Basil.’ Naturally, I prefer to grow my own. As it turned out, tracking down the exact seeds and germinating ka prao (Thai holy basil) ended up being an unexpected quest. In this quest, I learned that “Holy Basil” is as known as “Tulsi” in India. Holy basil or tulsi or sacred basil are general terms for four types of basil: Kapoor, Krishna, Rama, and Vana. The next part of the quest was to figure out which of those for is ka prao. The internet had limited information and I was not very good at decoding what is there. I then turned to the brut force method– grow them all out. Based on pictures, the one I sought has asymmetric leaves.
I started on this quest last year and I finally found and successfully germinated the holy basil used in ka prao gai. The plants are still growing and I plan to do a post about it. Please stay tuned.
In the meantime, this post is about how it is neat to find that one of my favorite seed companies is now offering (as of the 2016 growing year) Holy Basil. Continue Reading