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There are three varieties of basil that are used in Thai cuisine. Bai Horapha tastes rather like anise, looks like sweet basil, and is used in red and green curries. Bai Manglaek has a lemony flavour; tiny leaves and is usually sprinkled over salads or used in soups. Bai Grapao has a clove-like taste and purple reddish tinged leaves. It doesn't store well, so buy just before you intend to use it. European basil can be used as a substitute for all varieties if you can't find the Thai varieties. Basil has a strong flavour, so don't use more than the recipe states. Some nurseries sell Thai basil, so try growing your own.
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