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Holy (Thai) basil - where do you get it?

fldhkybnva Mar 15, 2013 08:17 AM

I posted this in the regional board but no responses so thought I'd post it in a more general forum. Where do you find Holy Basil? I have access to Whole Foods, Wegmans, Harris Teeter and H Mart. I thought H Mart might be the best bet but as it is a Korean store I wasn't sure if it'd be worth the trip.

  1. v
    vonshu Mar 16, 2013 07:41 PM

    holy basil and thai basil are two different plants. not sure which one you are looking for but real holy basil is very rare to find in markets as it only lasts for a day or two after it has been harvested. best bet is to grow it/find a growing plant or sub with thai basil, which is relatively easy to find in an asian market

    1. tcamp Mar 16, 2013 10:21 AM

      I'm in No. VA and get mine at Fresh World pan-asian (+ hispanic) market. Of course, only a couple of months until I can grow my own.

      1. Wahooty Mar 15, 2013 09:07 PM

        Are you talking about holy basil, or the regular purplish Thai basil? The latter is easy to find in just about any Asian market and quite easy to grow, but I have never run across holy basil plants for sale, or leaves in markets. Last year I ordered seeds and got them to sprout, but never got a plant big enough to harvest anything. If I can grow enough this year to make one dish of pad gra prao, I'll feel like I accomplished something. :)

        2 Replies
        1. re: Wahooty
          fldhkybnva Mar 15, 2013 09:17 PM

          Ideally holy basil, but I figured that'd be impossible to find so I guess Thai basil. I intend to make Thai basil chicken and would love to use Thai basil but in a pinch can try with regular but thought I'd hunt first.

          1. re: fldhkybnva
            Wahooty Mar 15, 2013 09:32 PM

            Do you have a Viet market around? That's where I'd go. Never been to one that didn't have Thai basil, in big styrofoam trays.

        2. t
          tardigrade Mar 15, 2013 07:01 PM

          A store catering to a large Asian clientele might have it. Otherwise, a decent nursery will have plants. They do well in pots.

          1 Reply
          1. re: tardigrade
            hill food Mar 15, 2013 07:09 PM

            home-grown is always the most reliable. it's easy in pots and it likes it soupy-ish (I'm planting mine in a swale this year). but still pretty damn resilient under any conditions.

            <edit> oh right you're DC, I've seen at least 3+ varieties at hardware/garden stores - Thai, Italian, sweet, Greek - (Frager's is my favorite) but it's probably still early.

          2. Bacardi1 Mar 15, 2013 11:07 AM

            H Mart might have it (I know the ethnic markets around here carry it), as well as local nurseries. It's also easy to grown in a pot from seed.

            1. melpy Mar 15, 2013 08:27 AM

              In the spring, Walmart (I know...) sells the plants in the garden section outside with other herbs. Thai basil is one you can get here in central PA.

              1 Reply
              1. re: melpy
                fldhkybnva Mar 15, 2013 08:42 AM

                Genius!! I might also check Home Depot as they often have a nice supply of herbs.

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