Anyone who has enjoyed green pesto will have enjoyed some basil. This traditinal herb is used a lot in Meditteranean cooking.
The key thing to remember with basil is that cooking destroys it's flavour - so use it in salads instead, or pestos that arn't subject to heat. If you must add it to warm cooking, add it at the last minute.
Basil needs sunlight to grow well - in the northern hemisphere you are better off growing it in a pot on your windowsill so that you can enjoy it all year around. Just make sure to pinch off any shoot that looks like it will flower, and you should have an abundance of leaves.
One unusual propety of basil is that it deters mosquitos. Basil is one of the few plants that release scent from it's leaves without needing to be touched. The scent confuses mosquitos (who locate their prey by the scent of lactic acid in their muscles). Thoughout asia and africa pots of basil are grown under windows and next to doors as a result to deter mosquitos from entering the house.