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Holy Basil in Brooklyn or Queens?

Hi,

Anyone know where I can get holy basil in Brooklyn or Queens? I can get Asian/Thai basil no problem, but haven't seen holy basil. My family has been addicted to pad ka-prao lately and I have been making it with regular or asian basil (which means it's not actually pad ka-prao, technically) but would love to get my hands on some holy basil.

Thanks!

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  1. The woman who runs the small Thai market across from Ayada on Woodside sells it but she told me it is best to call in advance to reserve some. I can't recall the name of her shop but it should come up on Yelp. The number is her cellphone I believe.

    1. If you plant some of the Indian tulsi seeds, you get, voila, holy basil. however may not be the answer if you dont have a setup where you can grow indoors.

      1. The market across from sripaphai has it sometimes. I've gone looking for it about 10 times and gotten it maybe 5 times.

        1. U.S. Market, the former NY Market in Elmhurst, had it the other day, along with kaffir lime leaves and sweet basil. They are in the extreme left of the chill case by the produce section. Bird's eye chilis and peeled garlic are right around there as well.

          14 Replies
          1. re: Silverjay

            I love US Market...much better than NY Market. I've gotten some great live scallops there.

            1. re: Silverjay

              Thanks, that sounds like one-stop shopping for me, as I also need the lime leaves. Do they always have those? What about galangal?

              And where is U.S. Market?

              1. re: missmasala

                It's on the corner of Broadway and 45 Ave., just north of Whitney. I've only just noticed the lime leaves on my last visit. No idea if they are regular or not. They are fresh, not frozen....I've only seen fresh galangal at the little Thai market on Mosco in the city. It was like a thumbsized piece. At the Chinese markets, they sell it frozen whole or sliced or pickled. Andy Ricker in his cookbook says it's not such a big deal to use the frozen stuff.

                1. re: missmasala

                  Do you have a good source of sunlight in your home, like a south facing window, or the ability to grow things outside in summer? Kaffir lime plants are readily available and very easy to grow. Logee's has them, but they are pricey. I bought mine for relatively little on Ebay...its been doing well for a few years now. On the same note, lemon grass is very easy to grow...just soak a stalk, or even a stump, in water until roots appear. Holy basil seeds are sold in the Asian markets in the spring...if you buy holy basil, you may be able to root it.

                  1. re: EricMM

                    I've been toying with the idea of getting a kaffir tree. Did you buy from a Thai woman in NJ? Does your tree bear fruit or just leaves?

                    1. re: Silverjay

                      Here was my source for my kaffir lime tree. They have great citrus plants on dwarfing rootstocks, much better deal than say logees. Ive had my tree for more than 5 years - its pretty sturdy - goes outside for the summer - but I have never seen a flower or fruit.

                      https://www.fourwindsgrowers.com/inde...

                      1. re: jen kalb

                        Thanks! I think I will get one in January.

                        1. re: jen kalb

                          Thanks for kaffir lime tree info. Been thinking about getting one for years. Don't know why I haven't, as I have both south facing windows and a garden.
                          I did grow lemongrass one year, but back then I didn't make a lot of Thai food. Also, lemongrass is easy for me to find—they have it at the local greengrocers; kaffir lime, not so much.

                          And Silverjay, frozen galangal is totally fine, but I have a hard time even finding that at the asian markets in sunset park where I shop.

                          Will try growing the holy basil next season.

                          Looks like I at least need to make a trip to 45th and Bway in Elmhurst soon. Want to learn how to make a good rendition of tom kha gai because my kids like to eat it for breakfast (and lunch and dinner) we used to just buy two quarts at a time from sri, but that expensive and lately it hasn't been that good there, even when I try to explain what I want, and even when they know me. They say the cooks will refuse to do it that way, but I think they're just cutting corners.

                          1. re: missmasala

                            Here's my total Elmhurst Thai sourcing rundown:
                            Hong Kong Market next door on 45th has Thai stuff as well, including a separate cash only Thai mini store that sells some (not much) herbs and a bunch of prepared foods. In the HK Market frozen section they have galangal, krachai, pandan, and some other frozen stuff. It's cheaper here than buying at the Thai specialty places like one on Mosco or the woman across from Ayada. I usually buy palm sugar, fish sauce, here as well.

                            Top Line supermarket, which is a block up from US Market on Broadway has a lot of SE Asian stuff as well. I didn't see fresh herbs the day I was there but they might have them. It's kind of dumpy but they are supposed to be known for SE Asian sourcing. I bought my mortar/pestle here actually. My SE Asian friend that lives in Elmhurst told me the Chinese markets are starting to offer SE Asian stuff to grab those customers from Top Line.

                            Sugar Club is a little Thai market across from Top Line on Broadway. They sell mostly snacks and drinks and some prepared goods but also a limited amount of fresh herbs. I think they have frozen stuff too.

                            The woman across from Ayada, I can't remember what she calls her shop, has a similar selection. She sells basil starter plants if you want a headstart. She also sells the fresh homemade ground dry chili mixture that comes in from friends or relatives in Thailand. Get this if you go!....She sells fresh herbs but they run out quickly apparently. She told me to call in advance for holy basil as I noted in my original reply. She has a freezer with lime leaves and galangal, etc. Also she sells various pla ra. She is good with advice also.

                            1. re: Silverjay

                              Thanks Silverjay. This is great info. I appreciate it!

                          2. re: jen kalb

                            Thanks for kaffir lime tree info. Been thinking about getting one for years. Don't know why I haven't, as I have both south facing windows and a garden.
                            I did grow lemongrass one year, but back then I didn't make a lot of Thai food. Also, lemongrass is easy for me to find—they have it at the local greengrocers; kaffir lime, not so much.
                            And Silverjay, frozen galangal is totally fine, but I have a hard time even finding that at the asian markets in sunset park where I shop.

                            Will try growing the holy basil next season.

                            And looks like I need to make a trip to 45th and Bway in Elmhurst soon.

                            1. re: missmasala

                              doesnt that NY Market have the frozen galangal? They have in the past - but havent checked with their new setup.

                            2. re: Silverjay

                              It's never had flowers or fruit, and still remains pretty small.