The season's most versatile herb enlivens dishes from classic (pesto) to contemporary (sorbet?!). Use it with abandon.
Purple Basil Lemonade
Purple basil's mildly spicy flavors―think clove, licorice, mint, and cinnamon―adds a layer of complexity to this super-easy lemonade. For best results, crush the basil with sugar in a mortar and pestle to release its fragrant oils. Or, if you don't have a set, process the basil, sugar, and about 1/4 cup of the water in a food processor or blender.
Works best with: Purple basil