Herbs & leaves can add such a hit of happiness to your kitchen table, anywhere really. Often the leaves on flowers or plants can rival the beauty of the bloom, so showcase them in low bowls where the weight of the leaf is supported by the rim of the bowl. Herbs either planted or in a clear glass of water adds to the tableau. A piece of fruit or berries just gives another layer to the lusciousness.
Herbs can add great texture to a flower arrangement. This time of year when so many herbs are growing like crazy, snip a few stems and intersperse them with some of your favorite blooms. Here zinnias got the sage treatment. Our rooftop herb garden brimming with lots of choices. Rosemary is another particular favorite. Happy Flower Friday all!
Pots of herbs can be picked up for a song at garden centers as well as many grocery stores. They are incredibly handy in the kitchen where you can snip and use the herb as you need it when cooking, plus they give you an energizing hit of green in the space.
There are just certain things I like hanging out in the fridge at the ready. The above jar of mayo is now on that list. So much so that I packed a bottle of it in our luggage for this trip. We started carrying it at the shop awhile back, and that is when the love began. The herbs added to this top flight mayonnaise is what makes it extra special. Parsley, tarragon & dill mixed with the fresh lemon make this an easy dip for crudités. But what I tried it with the other day made us both very happy at lunchtime. Mixed with tuna, it bumped up the flavor quotient considerably. The herbs adding a delicate note that made the tuna salad absolutely divine.
Mister Sive is the griller in the family. I am the lucky eater of said grilling. This post is for all you grillers. Or for those of you like me, pass it on to your favorite grill person and then make sure you are first in line to try these. You will not be sorry. Below is my observation of what my husband put together. Again, I am the observer in this one, but the very happy diner once all is said and done.
Thinly slice Yukon gold potatoes. Put in a bowl. Add a healthy glug of extra virgin olive oil. Mix around with your hands or a spoon so all the potatoes are evenly coated with the oil. If they seem a little dry, add more. Super important that these be well well oiled. Then add a good dose of salt & pepper. Next finely chop a shallot or two, depending on the size of the shallot and how many potatoes you are cooking. Gently mix those in. Yummy already. Now finely chop fresh thyme and oregano. Gently mix those in. You will need a cast iron skillet or some skillet you feel can handle the heat of your grill. Add a small coating of oil to the skillet. Add the potatoes. Staying with these all along, turning the potatoes as they cook. They will start to brown and caramelize a bit. The herbs and the shallot will infuse them. Keep moving them around until they are your desired amount of done. He served them with steaks, but these would be awesome with just about anything. Fish, chicken, served with a cocktail before dinner or just by themselves for a snack.
Cooking with fresh herbs is a game changer. No matter whether you grow them or buy them, using fresh herbs whenever possible will infuse herby delightfulness and extra depth of flavor to just about anything you are whipping up.
When you get home from the grocery store or farmers market, give your herbs (like basil & parsley) a fresh cut right away and put them in glasses or vases on your counter or dining table so you can enjoy them visually. They become like little arrangements–that are called into action while you cook, doing double duty.
Fresh herbs make the perfect base when you are baking/roasting a piece of fish or chicken. Simply lay either on top of fresh herbs that you put on the bottom of a baking dish. Add a little white wine or olive oil or both and get set for a seriously infused herbaceous treat when all is said and done.
At this hearty time of year when gardens and planters are brimming with bounty, think of using herbs as a solo arrangement. A big bundle of rosemary or a dancing group of flowering dill can make one deliriously divine centerpiece added to a dining or side table.
You know when I make something we really enjoy, I like to pass it on and share. Given the season and that herbs are so plentiful, this uber herby vinaigrette is one of those things. We got our hands on a beautiful piece of tuna last week, so I tried to make from memory a Salad Nicoise I had enjoyed at Buvette on a solo visit and really wanted to make for Ted. After a little Google searching, I came up with a vinaigrette recipe, as this was the one component I was coming up dry on for the salad. A recipe by Tyler Florence was what I took the most away from, so I want to give a shout-out in thanks! I altered it just a bit. Here is what I whipped up that is pretty tasty, really herby, and also worked as a marinade for the tuna before I grilled it. So it really did double duty.
Mince 1 large garlic clove as finely as you can. Chop up 2 tablespoons of parsley, as well as 1 heaping tablespoon of fresh chopped tarragon. Put all of that in a jar that has a lid. To that jar add the juice of 1 lemon, a tablespoon of Dijon mustard, and 3 tablespoons of red wine vinegar. Add liberal amount of salt and fresh cracked black pepper and a half of a cup of the best extra virgin olive oil you can get your hands on. Vinaigrette is always the time to use your very best olive oil. Now put that lid on and shake, shake, shake. Make this very first thing when you start your cooking so it can sit a bit and all blend together before you dress your salad. This is divine on any salad, not just Salad Nicoise. Just know it packs a serious herby punch, but what a good punch it is. This can easily sit in the fridge for a few days too. Enjoy!