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(About.com)   Fark Food Thread: Dried herbs and spices are convenient, but fresh ones are preferred.. right? Do you go through herbs quickly enough to always keep fresh ones on hand? Other ways to make fresh herbs last? Grow your own?   (cookingfortwo.about.com) divider line 154
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1747 clicks; posted to Main » on 09 Jan 2014 at 5:00 PM (27 weeks ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2014-01-09 05:31:44 PM
I always freeze enough basil pesto to make it through the winter. Just had some last night. I've managed to keep a couple of large rosemary pots alive for a few years now, and they keep us in fresh rosemary year-round.

This summer I experimented with making herb salts. If you use just enough salt to dry the herbs, you get can get an intensely herbal flavor, but it's not so salty that it prevents you from using a good amount of it. I made a basic herbs de Provence salt, and a basil-lemongrass salt. Great on things like potatoes or popcorn, but also good on, say, an very fudgy brownie or a shortbread cookie, if you're into that sort of thing.
 
2014-01-09 05:34:26 PM
If not for the polar vortex, there would still be sage alive in a protected spot in my herb garden. That usually doesn't die back until after Christmas here. Fried sage leaves are teh awesome.
 
2014-01-09 05:35:41 PM

litespeed74: Fresh when it makes sense to use fresh.  I chop up a mixture of fresh herbs as an appetizer.

In a processor, chop handfuls of basil, thyme and rosemary.  Add some garlic and dried red chili.
Add to good olive oil
Dip good bread
enjoy.

I hated buying herbs at  insane costs at the market.

I just bought some seeds online and I hope to get a good indoor herb garden going until summer.  I don't know what I'm doing but I look forward to learning.
Any Farkers grow indoors?  And no, not that kind of herb..


Well, I intended to. Don't be so quick to discount what *those* growers of *those* plants can teach you, though... While the nutritional requirement for the plants may vary (especially because you're looking at a strictly vegetative state for most herbs and not to enter any flowering), the ingenuity that can be passed on is really invaluable.
 
2014-01-09 05:36:19 PM
10 spices? Some of these have to be doubles.
31.media.tumblr.com
Ore A Gone O?
 
2014-01-09 05:38:45 PM
My house has really deep eaves, and a small kitchen window, so I can't grow herbs inside. I grow them in the back yard during the summer; fresh basil and parsley are the ones that the dried herbs can't substitute for. I sometimes buy fresh tarragon and thyme, and put the excess in the freezer. Ninety percent of the herbs/spices I use, other than garlic, are dried, but I have a large drawer and three shelves full of herbs and spices.
 
vpc
2014-01-09 05:39:32 PM

canavar: grow your own  and then you can make herb pastes and freeze them...have them on hand all year long


snip the herb, throw into a food processor with a little olive oil and puree it up.  scrape it into a zip lock AND LABEL IT---herbs tend to look all the same when you do this---then put it in the freezer.  fresh herbs all the time.


I do this but I measure teaspoons and tablespoons into an ice cube tray before freezing - 24 hours later I put it in my (LABELED is right) ziplock. Then if I need a measured amount - rare, as I follow grandma's rule of cooking, add enough so it tastes right - I have it without thawing the entire jar.
 
2014-01-09 05:39:45 PM
Spoiled where I live. My herbs can really grow outside all year (some months more than others of course). Basil is the toughest to keep going it seems. There are no natural predators (rabbits, deer and such) to worry about.
 
2014-01-09 05:40:47 PM
Kind of a threadjack, but still herb-related...

I cook for a living, so we have tons of dried herbs and spices. I keep them in an over-the-door shoe rack with clear plastic pockets. They're alphabetized, and each pocket has Dymo labels. Husband still yells upstairs to ask where the Rosemary is. My answer is never anything like "Fourth row down, two to the left, MARKED ROSEMARY"...I just say "It has a silver cap and the label's red." "Found it! Thanks honey!"

:)
 
2014-01-09 05:43:29 PM
I can't keep basil alive. Indoors, outdoors, sunlight, shade, dry, wet, doesn't matter. It wilts and dies within days no matter what I do.
 
2014-01-09 05:44:03 PM
Tuscan Rosemary, a couple Thymes, a couple Lavenders, the wife likes Mint..so she grows 7 varieties, a few Sage, Greek Oregano, Dill.  Plus a few aromatic veggies like carrots, celery & onions.  We both work on the garden when we can.

In the off-season is what the grocery is for.  and I wouldn't thumb my nose at dried bottled herbs and spices either.
 
2014-01-09 05:44:22 PM
semi-threadjack, but also herb related: I have a Costco-sized bag of pine nuts...besides making ten years' worth of pesto, any ideas what else to do with it?
 
2014-01-09 05:44:52 PM
Except for bay. Bay leaves are usually preferred dry.
 
2014-01-09 05:46:33 PM
Aside from fresh or dried, there's also the "steeped in vodka" option. I did a lemon-rosemary vodka and a cardamom-vanilla vodka last fall.
 
2014-01-09 05:47:02 PM

Mr.Hawk: Spoiled where I live. My herbs can really grow outside all year (some months more than others of course). Basil is the toughest to keep going it seems. There are no natural predators (rabbits, deer and such) to worry about.


All basil will eventually succumb to fusarium wilt.  But they'll start to taste like crap before that.  Only young plants taste good.
 
2014-01-09 05:47:03 PM

voodoomedic: semi-threadjack, but also herb related: I have a Costco-sized bag of pine nuts...besides making ten years' worth of pesto, any ideas what else to do with it?


They're good in hummus, and make a really good crust for chicken breasts.
 
2014-01-09 05:47:23 PM
Fresh basil, didn't think it was easy until I visited some friends in Hawaii who grew and ate it fresh. Problem is, I don't get enough sunlight due to the mountain blocking most daylight. (1, 700 elevation to my 900 elevation makes for lovely views, but notsomuch sunlight, which is awesome for Phoenix)
 
2014-01-09 05:49:44 PM

voodoomedic: semi-threadjack, but also herb related: I have a Costco-sized bag of pine nuts...besides making ten years' worth of pesto, any ideas what else to do with it?


http://www.lidiasitaly.com/recipes/detail/177

Aslo, saute spinach with garlic and top with toasted nuts.
 
2014-01-09 05:50:41 PM
Thyme, oregano and rosemary are acceptable dried.  Dried basil is an abomination.  Dried sage is also rather useless.
 
2014-01-09 05:51:18 PM

Shazam999: Mr.Hawk: Spoiled where I live. My herbs can really grow outside all year (some months more than others of course). Basil is the toughest to keep going it seems. There are no natural predators (rabbits, deer and such) to worry about.

All basil will eventually succumb to fusarium wilt.  But they'll start to taste like crap before that.  Only young plants taste good.



Sweet! I was looking for a new band name!
 
2014-01-09 05:53:10 PM

someonelse: voodoomedic: semi-threadjack, but also herb related: I have a Costco-sized bag of pine nuts...besides making ten years' worth of pesto, any ideas what else to do with it?

http://www.lidiasitaly.com/recipes/detail/177

Aslo, saute spinach with garlic and top with toasted nuts.


just toast the nuts and put them in salads, or whatever.  they are very versatile.
 
2014-01-09 05:53:54 PM
I tried to get rosemary and lavender to grow on our balcony but I don't think I'll be trying from seeds again. Our mint plant that we have inside does pretty well, though. I freeze each harvest since mint tea is the only tea I can stomach.
 
2014-01-09 05:55:25 PM

Mr_Fabulous: I, too, have a whole bunch of fresh ones in pots. They all grow like weeds in the summer months, out on the deck. But they're kind of a pain to keep alive over the winter (don't even try with basil).

I hadn't thought of using a grow light. Suppose I should.

Anyway, fresh herbs are the tits. They make an immense difference in my daube de boeuf provencal and my lemon-oregano chicken.

/also, fresh-cracked pepper
//and real garlic


Real garlic is the best. I don't mind chopping it. I've used that pre-chopped stuff in the jars and it's convenient but it never tastes right.
 
2014-01-09 06:01:17 PM
This is what I was talking about earlier as far as the light goes, FTR.i993.photobucket.comi993.photobucket.com It's definitely a great way to go if you want to grow. Only 216w on the entire fixture, emit the proper light spectrum for good vegetative growth, low heat, and they make 2 ft, 3 ft, and 4 ft fixtures as well. You can even get single bulb up to 8 bulb (probably more too). That one was like 70 bucks or something? Home Depot has T5 fixture for much cheaper, but you have to buy the bulbs separately and make sure you're getting the right ones.
 
2014-01-09 06:03:28 PM

Mr.Hawk: Shazam999: Mr.Hawk: Spoiled where I live. My herbs can really grow outside all year (some months more than others of course). Basil is the toughest to keep going it seems. There are no natural predators (rabbits, deer and such) to worry about.

All basil will eventually succumb to fusarium wilt.  But they'll start to taste like crap before that.  Only young plants taste good.


Sweet! I was looking for a new band name!


This is why I love Fark. I could never figure out why my tomatoes wilted out and never came back regardless of watering or fertilizings...fusarium wilt.

There is growing interest in using Fusarium wilt as a form of biological control. Certain pathogenic strains of F. oxysporum could be released to infect and control invasive weed species. This type of control (called a mycoherbicide) would be more targeted than herbicide applications, without the associated problems of chemical use. In addition. F. oxysporum may compete with other soil fungi that act as pathogens of important crops. Introducing specific strains of F. oxysporum that are not pathogenic (or non-infectious mutants of pathogens) to nearby crops could take nutrients from other potential disease-causing fungi.

Thank you Shazzam. Now I won't feel so guilty when I stare at my poor tomato plants....
 
2014-01-09 06:03:36 PM
Fresh - always.

I grow Rosemary, fennel, and chives - I've had the fennel for almost five years; you can't kill it.  Basil?  Love the stuff but for some crazy reason I cannot keep basil alive.
 
2014-01-09 06:08:49 PM

someonelse: voodoomedic: semi-threadjack, but also herb related: I have a Costco-sized bag of pine nuts...besides making ten years' worth of pesto, any ideas what else to do with it?

http://www.lidiasitaly.com/recipes/detail/177

Aslo, saute spinach with garlic and top with toasted nuts.



It's kind of funny that in a recipe for "Pine Nut Cookies" the pine nuts are listed as optional.

=]
 
2014-01-09 06:09:48 PM

This text is now purple: Except for bay. Bay leaves are usually preferred dry.


Not once you've tried fresh, they're not. They're still not to be eaten, just used for their essence -- the flavor is overpowering and I think they're mildly toxic or something -- but you can keep fresh bay leaves in your freezer and they're just fine. The flavor is much better IMHO.
 
2014-01-09 06:09:53 PM

TheShavingofOccam123: Mr.Hawk: Shazam999: Mr.Hawk: Spoiled where I live. My herbs can really grow outside all year (some months more than others of course). Basil is the toughest to keep going it seems. There are no natural predators (rabbits, deer and such) to worry about.

All basil will eventually succumb to fusarium wilt.  But they'll start to taste like crap before that.  Only young plants taste good.


Sweet! I was looking for a new band name!

This is why I love Fark. I could never figure out why my tomatoes wilted out and never came back regardless of watering or fertilizings...fusarium wilt.

There is growing interest in using Fusarium wilt as a form of biological control. Certain pathogenic strains of F. oxysporum could be released to infect and control invasive weed species. This type of control (called a mycoherbicide) would be more targeted than herbicide applications, without the associated problems of chemical use. In addition. F. oxysporum may compete with other soil fungi that act as pathogens of important crops. Introducing specific strains of F. oxysporum that are not pathogenic (or non-infectious mutants of pathogens) to nearby crops could take nutrients from other potential disease-causing fungi.

Thank you Shazzam. Now I won't feel so guilty when I stare at my poor tomato plants....


Try F. Wilt resistant varieties (they'll have an F designation).  Also not sure where you live but high humidity can cause problems too.  Try not to get the leaves wet when watering, also you can plant tomatoes super deep (pinch off the lower leaves from the stem, plant 6-12 inches of the stem) as they'll make roots from the buried stem).
 
2014-01-09 06:09:57 PM
Dried for convenience, fresh when I'm feeling it.
 
2014-01-09 06:11:22 PM
I grow mint year round- use it for some cooking and for making mint simple syrup for tea and for cocktails. I also grow cilantro and basil in the Spring, Summer and Fall. Last season I ended up with three basil bushes, each about four feet tall. Made 7 quarts of pesto. Ate two and gave the rest away as gifts. I'm going to grow a wider variety this year- thyme, sage and dill for sure.
 
2014-01-09 06:13:28 PM
I had an awesome Basil plant going, but leaf miners got it. I live in S. Florida and its always some sort of crazy bug eating my plants. Just lost a bunch of cucumbers.
 
2014-01-09 06:13:39 PM

Shazam999: TheShavingofOccam123: Mr.Hawk: Shazam999: Mr.Hawk: Spoiled where I live. My herbs can really grow outside all year (some months more than others of course). Basil is the toughest to keep going it seems. There are no natural predators (rabbits, deer and such) to worry about.

All basil will eventually succumb to fusarium wilt.  But they'll start to taste like crap before that.  Only young plants taste good.


Sweet! I was looking for a new band name!

This is why I love Fark. I could never figure out why my tomatoes wilted out and never came back regardless of watering or fertilizings...fusarium wilt.

There is growing interest in using Fusarium wilt as a form of biological control. Certain pathogenic strains of F. oxysporum could be released to infect and control invasive weed species. This type of control (called a mycoherbicide) would be more targeted than herbicide applications, without the associated problems of chemical use. In addition. F. oxysporum may compete with other soil fungi that act as pathogens of important crops. Introducing specific strains of F. oxysporum that are not pathogenic (or non-infectious mutants of pathogens) to nearby crops could take nutrients from other potential disease-causing fungi.

Thank you Shazzam. Now I won't feel so guilty when I stare at my poor tomato plants....

Try F. Wilt resistant varieties (they'll have an F designation).  Also not sure where you live but high humidity can cause problems too.  Try not to get the leaves wet when watering, also you can plant tomatoes super deep (pinch off the lower leaves from the stem, plant 6-12 inches of the stem) as they'll make roots from the buried stem).


I haven't done tomatoes, but do you know if you can use an enzymatic digestor/beneficial microbial/h202 to avoid those problems?
 
2014-01-09 06:14:27 PM

naughtyrev: fat aristotle: naughtyrev: fat aristotle: Gonz: I grow my own cilantro, basil, parsley, and thyme. Oh, and mint.

Fresh herbs are super easy to grow, and taste exponentially better IMO.

I'd love to but my apartment doesn't get direct sunlight.

Mine doesn't either, so I got one of these. Works great.

I've read about those but didn't know anyone who has actually tried it. I'll have to consider that.

Here's mine with about 3 weeks of growth on it:
[i.imgur.com image 320x240]

The basil runs riot, so you have to keep it constantly plucked.


I'll just leave this here.
 
2014-01-09 06:21:03 PM

Witty Comment: I haven't done tomatoes, but do you know if you can use an enzymatic digestor/beneficial microbial/h202 to avoid those problems?


Can't see how any of those would help.  H202 is of dubious plant use despite all the garble on the internet about it.

Try resistant varieties first.  There are about 40 bojillion varieties of tomatoes so I guarantee you'll find something that'll work for you.
 
2014-01-09 06:23:49 PM
Most of this has been said, but allow me to reiterate:

1. Fresh and dry herbs are not interchangeable. I cook almost entirely from recipes and use only what is called for; if you're improvising, the dried versions are usually stronger than fresh (although this runs counter to the experience of  TheShavingofOccam123).

2. Dry herbs and spices must still be "fresh." That 10 year old bottle of dried sage you have is no good. I've heard it's best to use dried herbs and spices within 6 months.

3. Fresh herbs can be preserved by freezing them. The best way to do this is to blanch, puree, and then divide into an ice cube tray (that way you are not chipping away at a giant block of frozen basil when you need it). The blanching step is optional, but it will keep your herbs bright green, otherwise they turn brownish in the blender/food processor.

4. As for spices, you should use whole spices whenever possible and grind them yourself. I have a additional coffee grinder for the purpose. Or, if you like exercise, you can use a mortar and pestle. Pre-ground black pepper, in particular (pun intended), is virtually useless.
 
2014-01-09 06:27:12 PM

Jekylman: tricycleracer: Basil is the easiest thing to grow.  It gets real sad looking and screams at you to water it days before it will actually croak.

Here in Southern California, cilantro and mint are the easiest things to grow. You can't get rid of mint and cilantro will sprout despite your best efforts.

Also in the garden:
sage
vast swaths of rosemary
chives/onions
marjoram
thyme
basil
rue
lemongrass
Also use lime tree leaves in an herb-like manner.


keep mint in pots or it will take over.
/the hard way.
//would you like some tea
 
2014-01-09 06:29:42 PM

Shazam999: Witty Comment: I haven't done tomatoes, but do you know if you can use an enzymatic digestor/beneficial microbial/h202 to avoid those problems?

Can't see how any of those would help.  H202 is of dubious plant use despite all the garble on the internet about it.

Try resistant varieties first.  There are about 40 bojillion varieties of tomatoes so I guarantee you'll find something that'll work for you.


Well, idk about dubious for the h202... it definitely takes care of the bacterial aspect of the problem and supplies oxygen to the root zone. I'm not Googling this right meow so I could be wrong, but I'm pretty most root rot problems are caused by an anaerobic environment so the h202 helps with that in hydroponic applications as long as the reservoir temps are at a level where the water can carry dissolved oxygen, in soil you're just kind of screwing the pooch by messing up the beneficial bacteria/mycorrhizae so it can't feed the plant properly. The enzymes and digestors just aid in the process of fending off the problem to begin with by breaking down the dead root matter and digesting it so it doesn't fester in the rhizosphere, and simultaneously stimulate new root growth as well.
 
2014-01-09 06:32:37 PM

Witty Comment: Shazam999: Witty Comment: I haven't done tomatoes, but do you know if you can use an enzymatic digestor/beneficial microbial/h202 to avoid those problems?

Can't see how any of those would help.  H202 is of dubious plant use despite all the garble on the internet about it.

Try resistant varieties first.  There are about 40 bojillion varieties of tomatoes so I guarantee you'll find something that'll work for you.

Well, idk about dubious for the h202... it definitely takes care of the bacterial aspect of the problem and supplies oxygen to the root zone. I'm not Googling this right meow so I could be wrong, but I'm pretty most root rot problems are caused by an anaerobic environment so the h202 helps with that in hydroponic applications as long as the reservoir temps are at a level where the water can carry dissolved oxygen, in soil you're just kind of screwing the pooch by messing up the beneficial bacteria/mycorrhizae so it can't feed the plant properly. The enzymes and digestors just aid in the process of fending off the problem to begin with by breaking down the dead root matter and digesting it so it doesn't fester in the rhizosphere, and simultaneously stimulate new root growth as well.


I guess you're talking hydroponics, I just grow tomatoes in soil.  Thing with tomatoes is that they create massive root systems so if you want hydro for them be prepared...
 
2014-01-09 06:34:04 PM

Witty Comment: Shazam999: Witty Comment: I haven't done tomatoes, but do you know if you can use an enzymatic digestor/beneficial microbial/h202 to avoid those problems?

Can't see how any of those would help.  H202 is of dubious plant use despite all the garble on the internet about it.

Try resistant varieties first.  There are about 40 bojillion varieties of tomatoes so I guarantee you'll find something that'll work for you.

Well, idk about dubious for the h202... it definitely takes care of the bacterial aspect of the problem and supplies oxygen to the root zone. I'm not Googling this right meow so I could be wrong, but I'm pretty most root rot problems are caused by an anaerobic environment so the h202 helps with that in hydroponic applications as long as the reservoir temps are at a level where the water can carry dissolved oxygen, in soil you're just kind of screwing the pooch by messing up the beneficial bacteria/mycorrhizae so it can't feed the plant properly. The enzymes and digestors just aid in the process of fending off the problem to begin with by breaking down the dead root matter and digesting it so it doesn't fester in the rhizosphere, and simultaneously stimulate new root growth as well.


Oh yeah and if you go hydro then you should prefer varieties that do well in greenhouses, as many tomato varieties do very poorly otherwise.
 
2014-01-09 06:35:09 PM

Shazam999: Witty Comment: Shazam999: Witty Comment: I haven't done tomatoes, but do you know if you can use an enzymatic digestor/beneficial microbial/h202 to avoid those problems?

Can't see how any of those would help.  H202 is of dubious plant use despite all the garble on the internet about it.

Try resistant varieties first.  There are about 40 bojillion varieties of tomatoes so I guarantee you'll find something that'll work for you.

Well, idk about dubious for the h202... it definitely takes care of the bacterial aspect of the problem and supplies oxygen to the root zone. I'm not Googling this right meow so I could be wrong, but I'm pretty most root rot problems are caused by an anaerobic environment so the h202 helps with that in hydroponic applications as long as the reservoir temps are at a level where the water can carry dissolved oxygen, in soil you're just kind of screwing the pooch by messing up the beneficial bacteria/mycorrhizae so it can't feed the plant properly. The enzymes and digestors just aid in the process of fending off the problem to begin with by breaking down the dead root matter and digesting it so it doesn't fester in the rhizosphere, and simultaneously stimulate new root growth as well.

I guess you're talking hydroponics, I just grow tomatoes in soil.  Thing with tomatoes is that they create massive root systems so if you want hydro for them be prepared...


Lol, well believe me, I'm no stranger to gigantic root systems. ;) I'd bet a lot of the mistake people make in soil is also over watering and creating the environment for that to happen in the first place. Like I said though, haven't done tomatoes but I think indoor gardening tends to have the same environmental hazards.
 
2014-01-09 06:40:09 PM
I almost always have fresh parsley, basil, and cilantro on hand (even though the cilantro and basil get goopy and weird pretty fast). Another tip that works pretty well with fresh herbs is treat them like you would cut flowers- snip a bit of the ends off and put them in a glass of water and then cover with a loose fitting plastic baggie and refrigerate. It isn't a perfect solution, but it will extend the window of opportunity you get with fresh stuff if you aren't inclined to go the food processor/olive oil/ freezer route.

I'm trapped in a virtually sunless apartment now after having veggie/herb gardens for over 15 years- that aero garden is looking pretty sweet! Thanks for the tip!

=]
 
2014-01-09 06:41:17 PM

Witty Comment: Shazam999: Witty Comment: Shazam999: Witty Comment: I haven't done tomatoes, but do you know if you can use an enzymatic digestor/beneficial microbial/h202 to avoid those problems?

Can't see how any of those would help.  H202 is of dubious plant use despite all the garble on the internet about it.

Try resistant varieties first.  There are about 40 bojillion varieties of tomatoes so I guarantee you'll find something that'll work for you.

Well, idk about dubious for the h202... it definitely takes care of the bacterial aspect of the problem and supplies oxygen to the root zone. I'm not Googling this right meow so I could be wrong, but I'm pretty most root rot problems are caused by an anaerobic environment so the h202 helps with that in hydroponic applications as long as the reservoir temps are at a level where the water can carry dissolved oxygen, in soil you're just kind of screwing the pooch by messing up the beneficial bacteria/mycorrhizae so it can't feed the plant properly. The enzymes and digestors just aid in the process of fending off the problem to begin with by breaking down the dead root matter and digesting it so it doesn't fester in the rhizosphere, and simultaneously stimulate new root growth as well.

I guess you're talking hydroponics, I just grow tomatoes in soil.  Thing with tomatoes is that they create massive root systems so if you want hydro for them be prepared...

Lol, well believe me, I'm no stranger to gigantic root systems. ;) I'd bet a lot of the mistake people make in soil is also over watering and creating the environment for that to happen in the first place. Like I said though, haven't done tomatoes but I think indoor gardening tends to have the same environmental hazards.


Tomato plants can get massive.  It ain't weed.

thephotogardenbee.com

But yeah, same indoor hazards apply.  Your expertise is transferable.
 
2014-01-09 06:42:15 PM
I'm a herbicidal maniac and not to be trusted around any sort of potted or gardened plant; I can kill even the toughest. But my entire front/side yard is wild thyme, and it is the most wonderful smelling, beautiful ground cover you can imagine. And lovely to sprinkle into stews, etc.
 
2014-01-09 06:45:45 PM

eyeoftheaxis: Jekylman: tricycleracer: Basil is the easiest thing to grow.  It gets real sad looking and screams at you to water it days before it will actually croak.

Here in Southern California, cilantro and mint are the easiest things to grow. You can't get rid of mint and cilantro will sprout despite your best efforts.

Also in the garden:
sage
vast swaths of rosemary
chives/onions
marjoram
thyme
basil
rue
lemongrass
Also use lime tree leaves in an herb-like manner.

keep mint in pots or it will take over.
/the hard way.
//would you like some tea


Makes for a fantastic mint-chip ice cream.
 
2014-01-09 06:46:09 PM
 I'm surprised someone hasn't pointed this out...

Fresh herbs are cartainly wonderful, but dried have greater intensity of flavor.  So, when I am going for subtle,  I use fresh.  When I want more of an herbal blast, I use dried.  Certain Italian sauces need dried oregano for maximum flavor.  Pesto, on the other hand, wants fresh basil. Salsa needs fresh cilantro, but stewed tomatoes cry out for dried.  Fresh dill is necessary for making dill pickles, but dried does well in tzaziki sauce.for gyros.  It all depends.
 
2014-01-09 06:46:12 PM

TheShavingofOccam123: Not so fast, Freshy Fresh Subby.

Dried parsley has its place. So does granulated onion. The fresh items of these two are too overpowering (I guess it can be blamed on oils and other liquids in them) for lots of recipes. Additionally, I think dried parsley tastes completely different than fresh parsley. No high notes like fresh, just a nice earthy layer underneath every other taste.

/I am worried about the amount of dried parsley and granulated onions I use and how often I use them.
/don't get me started on bay leaf


There's actually two common kinds of fresh parsley - curly leaf and italian (flat).  Curly is very vegetal.  Italian is much milder.

I can't imagine not using fresh onion, granulated onion is very useful as well, but I consider it a totally different product and therefore different uses (rubs, for instance).
 
2014-01-09 06:46:21 PM

Sass-O-Rev: I'm a herbicidal maniac and not to be trusted around any sort of potted or gardened plant; I can kill even the toughest. But my entire front/side yard is wild thyme, and it is the most wonderful smelling, beautiful ground cover you can imagine. And lovely to sprinkle into stews, etc.



Thyme is my favorite, hands down. If I had to pick only one herb to use for the rest of my life it would be thyme.
 
2014-01-09 06:49:43 PM
I use an NFT system and grow my soft herbs fresh in that. Woody herbs sit in soil outdoors.

And if you ever want help, I'm cheap, and hey, $5 for 15 minutes of video/voice time with a horticultural research director (usually longer, I don't charge for overtime) is a damned good price, considering I can solve almost every problem you may have within those 15 (or more) minutes.

https://helpouts.google.com/search?q=gardening

I'm usually the top listing.
 
2014-01-09 06:51:06 PM

Habitual Cynic: I'm surprised someone hasn't pointed this out...

Fresh herbs are cartainly wonderful, but dried have greater intensity of flavor.  So, when I am going for subtle,  I use fresh.  When I want more of an herbal blast, I use dried.  Certain Italian sauces need dried oregano for maximum flavor.  Pesto, on the other hand, wants fresh basil. Salsa needs fresh cilantro, but stewed tomatoes cry out for dried.  Fresh dill is necessary for making dill pickles, but dried does well in tzaziki sauce.for gyros.  It all depends.



And fresh oregano is REALLY strong. I don't think many people realize that and accidentally over do it.
 
2014-01-09 06:52:04 PM
My rosemary plant started out as a 6" cutting from a relative's garden, now it's a small tree.  I found out the hard way to put some herbs in pots rather than plant them directly in the ground--it turns out oregano is Italian for "invasive ground cover".  Last couple years my thyme has returned every spring so I've always got some around when it's time to grill fish.

Basil, however, must be grown indoors.  I usually get one or two of those "live basil" rootballs in the produce section and keep it in a glass of water for months, or until I get tired of it and make enough pesto to drown a horse.  If I try to grow it outside it sends out an invisible Deer Signal and they'll trample every other living thing in the yard to get to it.  Every time, eaten to the ground.  I'd try and rig some sort of Rube Goldberg taser device if it weren't for neighborhood cats, kids, etc.  (sAaaayyyy....)

Made the mistake of planting the chives next to the onions one year, now we have onion-flavored chives forevermore (not that this is a bad thing, necessarily).
 
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