The leaves are aromatic and have a strong, spicy flavour with hints of licorice. Some varieties have larger leaves, and some have a purple hue. When the plant matures, spikes of lavender and deep purple flowers grow at the tops of the burgundy stems. The flowers share the same intense spice and hint of licorice flavour.
Basil boasts a high level of vitamin K, only 2 table spoons of Basil fulfills 20% of the recommended daily intake. Basil also has a moderate amount of beta-carotene, a powerful antioxidant which converts to vitamin A when digested. Basil has been used in traditional Hindu medicine to treat inflammatory diseases, including arthritis.