New cooking ideas to use up herbs


We’ve all had the problem of a) buying a bundle of fresh herbs when only a small amount is needed, or b) growing a pot of herbs and having to deal with a surplus. While drying and preserving them is always a good idea, we also like the idea of meeting the culinary challenge this problem poses. And, to help, here are two excellent resources we’ve enjoyed this summer:

This Washington Post article, Herb dilemmas solved, by the bunch, has proven to be especially useful. It’s a collection of ideas from a variety of chefs – each tackling one popular herb. Some intriguing ideas include a lemon-thyme spice cake, combining mint and basil in a vinaigrette, adding chives to panko bread crumbs for a fish coating, and cilantro with smoked salmon.

And then there’s Deborah Madison’s new book, Vegetable Literacy. In the book, she discusses twelve vegetable families, showing how the members often work quite well with each other, and suggesting ideas and recipes. And one of the families is the mint family, which includes (besides mint, obviously), anise hyssop, basil, bee balm, catmint, chia seeds, horehound, lavender, lemon balm, marjoam, oregano, perilla, rosemary, sage, savory, and thyme. 

And if any of you have some good go-to resources in this field, we’d love to hear them.

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One Comment

  • Foodelf  on  July 22, 2013

    I've always been a big fan of the Herbfarm cookbook by Jerry Traunfeld and I like his generous use of herbs, not just a 1/2 tsp here and there.

    I have a good-sized herb garden and I love to share with those can't grow their own. I sometimes bring a big bouquet of whatever is bountiful to the cooks at the onsite cafe at work and they are always thrilled to receive them.

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