Cinnamon basil is a cultivar of Ocimum basilicum (sweet basil). It contains cinnamate, the same chemical that gives cinnamon its flavor, and has the strongest scent of cinnamon.
Cinnamon basil has reddish stems, lavender spiked flowers and small- to medium-sized serrated green leaves. The leaves have a cinnamon-like taste and odor. It can grow up to 3 feet tall and 3 feet wide. Growing it in the garden may deter other pests that don’t like the smell of it.
If you’ve never grown or cooked with cinnamon basil, the following recipes might change your mind. Intensely fragrant, it can be used for baking, sauces, teas and as a “finisher” for many dishes.
Go ahead and give it a try. The Cinnamon Basil Chicken recipe is so divinely aromatic while cooking you might feel as though you’ve been transported to some foreign land – maybe the streets of Morocco or the Spice Markets of Istanbul. You might encounter flavors you’ve never experienced before. Toss it in your sliced summer peaches and red onion salad with honey lemon vinaigrette for a real burst of seasonal flavor. And, don’t forget to satisfy your sweet tooth with the wonderfully moist Apple-Basil Cake. Whether sweet or savory, this delightful herb gets high marks for satisfying the senses!