Genovese basil, 'Music' garlic, curly leaf parsley
'Music' garlic is a hardneck variety, introduced into Canada from Italy by Al Music in the 1980s. In spite of the "August's Harvest" on the label, it was ready in late July this year.
We have very little sun in our garden so only 3 of the cloves we planted produced decent sized heads. (I don't know how they did in my friends' gardens yet....)
The cloves are a lovely rose colour.
Because we have a mostly shady garden, we buy basil from the market. It is sold in huge clumps with the roots still attached. We then make plenty of pesto, using extra virgin olive oil, Genovese basil, curly leaf parsley, and garlic, and put it in the freezer. It's a wonderful taste of summer when the snow is flying and the wind is howling.
We wash the basil the day before making the pesto so the leaves will be completely dry. Then, we process the leaves and olive oil before adding the other ingredients. This means that the pesto will be green rather than black or grey. (Both taste the same but the green version looks far better. Candlelit dinners are nice but shouldn't be a requirement to cover up unsightly pesto....)
Wrapped in plastic and frozen, this keeps for about a year. Pieces can be easily cut off with a sharp knife. Note that the cheese and nuts will be added after thawing. It's better not to freeze the cheese and this way different nuts can be used depending on the dish.