Lambetton – Cooking summer vegetables with fresh herbs is a sweet twist on summer produce. Robinson County Farmers’ Market is now open, and it’s a perfect time to explore when other produce stands around the county, growing and / or cooking fresh herbs. Whether you plant them yourself or buy them at a farmer’s market or grocery store, adding fresh herbs is a quick way to turn ordinary foods into unusual foods.
In addition to helping flavor foods reduce salt, fat, and sugar, herbs can provide additional benefits. Researchers say that many herbs (both fresh and dried) contain antioxidants that help prevent diseases such as cancer and heart disease. Cutting fresh herbs into a dish also immediately enhances its appearance!
Unless recommended by your recipe, add basil, chives, cilantro, dill leaf, parsley, and one or two minutes before you finish cooking, or sprinkle over the food before serving. Less softer herbs, such as oregano, rosemary, and thyme, can be added to the final 20 minutes of cooking. A general guideline for using fresh herbs in cooking is to triple the amount of dried herbs. When transplanted, fresh herbs are often more successful than dried plants. For example, think of a potato salad with fresh and dried peppers!
Buy herbs near the time you plan to use them. When you grow plants in your own garden, the best time to harvest is after the dew has dried and before the sun has warmed up. This helps ensure the best taste and storage quality. Fresh herbs can be kept in an open or perforated plastic bag for a few days in a clean drawer in your refrigerator. If you do not have access to commercial luggage, use a sharp object to make several small holes in a regular plastic bag.
If you have more plants than you can eat, enjoy a bouquet of herbs in your home. You can use both single plants, a combination of plants, or you can use the plant as a green mixed with other flowers. Keep your bouquets in direct sunlight to preserve the aroma and color of the flowers.
One of my struggles to use fresh herbs is to know the best compounds. Here are a few suggestions;
– Basil is good with tomatoes and very good in fresh pesticides.
– Onions can be added to dips, potatoes and tomatoes.
– Celandro is used for salsa and tomatoes and is used in cooking in Mexico, Asia and the Caribbean.
– Dill improves the taste of carrots, cottage cheese, fish, green beans, potatoes and tomatoes.
Mint is often used in carrots, fruit salads, peppers, peas, turmeric and tea.
– Oregano adds flavor to peppers and tomatoes.
– Parsley – Twisted leaf is very common, but flat leaf or Italian parsley has a stronger flavor and is often preferred for cooking. Includes parsley, potato salad, tabobul and egg salad sandwiches.
– Rosemary is often used in chicken, fish, lamb, pork, fried potatoes, soups, stews and tomatoes.
– Wise can improve beef, chicken, potatoes, pork, carrots and summer squash.
– Tim is often served with egg yolks, beans, potatoes, poultry, summer pumpkins and tomatoes.
Taken from a new plant from Nisbaka Lincoln Extension University – Healthy Eating Picture.