Fine cooks know the amazing array of flavors to be found in dishes prepared with fresh herbs. But now you, too, can turn out delicious dishes filled with the zesty or subtle flavors fresh herbs offer. Herbs are easy to grow from seed in your own kitchen garden, or they’re readily available in grocery stores.
To avoid wasting fresh herbs, which can be a bit spendy in the stores, be sure to remove rubber bands or twists from their stems, and store them in the warmest part of your refrigerator. This usually means the top shelf. Trim end roots from the herb and store for use within a week. Plastic zip bags perforated with holes make the best storage container. Wash as you use them to minimize loss during storage. When cutting fresh herbs be sure your knife is sharp to minimize crushing the delicate leaves or stems. For a bold flavor add your herbs whole at the beginning of the cooking process and remove before serving. For a more subtle flavor to your dish, add chopped herbs later in the cooking process.
If you avoid using fresh herbs due to a lack of experience with the various flavors, there are many websites to help you select just the right herb for your dish. Fine Cooking has a
very helpful chart in which herb flavors are matched with the foods they best accent. After you learn the herb basics, you’ll want to experiment with just how much of a certain herb is just right for you. There is a picture of each herb for quick identification.
A common problem when cooking with fresh herbs is using a bit of it in one dish and then failing to use the rest of the package before it goes bad. Herbs can be frozen, but they lose some of their flavor in the process. The best answer is to know several good recipes for the herb before purchase. Here is a site that is the answer to your problems. You’ll find several great recipes for your basil or tarragon and you can plan your weekly cooking accordingly. Go to this cheap and healthy blog to make sure you never waste the cost of fresh herbs again.
Now, where to start? Here are some favorite fresh herb recipes for a variety of dishes.
Dips and Sauces: Goat cheese herb dip
Summer Mint Recipes: Kashi, mint and almond salad
Meat Recipes: Filet with fresh herb butter
Chicken Recipes: Herbed chicken nuggets
Salad Recipes: Potato salad with fresh herbs and lemon
Cooking with fresh herbs will add a new dimension to your culinary endeavors. You’ll be a more interesting, creative cook. It’s easy to grow your own herbs, and you’ll love popping out into your garden to pluck a sprig or two of your favorites when serving your family a savory dish. Or, fresh herbs are as near as your produce aisle in your favorite grocery market. So do a little research and a little experimenting and you’ll be sure to find some new and tasty recipes to serve for family and friends. More information on cooking with fresh herbs can be found at www.fresh-herbs.co.uk
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