Sunday, April 18, 2010

Herb Herb Herb, Herb Herb's the Word

For the longest time, whenever a recipe called for fresh herbs, I always used dried (1 tablespoon fresh = 1 teaspoon dried). The more I've used fresh herbs, the more I've realized they add so much more FLAVOR than dried. Actually, dried herbs are best in dishes like soups and stews, where they are simmering in a sauce. That's how they add the best flavor. If a recipe calls for fresh herbs thrown in at the end, the best results are ALWAYS with fresh herbs! I remember I made a recipe with dried basil because I was out of fresh one time, and I couldn't believe the difference compared to previous times. Since then I've always tried to use fresh herbs when a recipe calls for it.

The problem, of course, is herbs are EXPENSIVE. In fact, most of the time, you can buy a potted basil plant for LESS than you can buy a tiny package of basil. And since I don't cook on a daily basis, I always end up throwing the packages away.

The solution: grow your own herbs!

It's easier than it sounds. I don't have a backyard, so I can't plant them in a yard. Instead, I have two large pots where I plant 3 herbs each. This pot has oregano, thyme, and cilantro.

Oddly enough, I used to HATE cilantro. I thought it tasted like soap. Now I can't get enough!

And below I have rosemary, basil, and parsley.

And I also have mint, in its own separate pot. Mama's got have her mojitos.

Herbs are really easy to grow. I'd recommend getting a Miracle Grow potting soil or liquid fertilizer. I actually had to cut down my herbs last year because they were growing so fast! They need lots of sunshine and LOTS of water. Living in a place where it rarely rains, I have to water the plants every day. But it's SO worth it - I've definitely saved money, plus it's super convenient to just go out to our deck and snip off a few leaves when making dinner!


alana said...

I'm gonna have to give this a try. I seem to have a black thumb, but it's worth a shot. I just love fresh herbs, but they can be expensive and my local store seems to run out a lot.

The Lazy Housewife said...

It's easy - they seriously grow like weeds! Especially with some Miracle Grow :)