Everybody Loves Herbs

Thank you all for the well wishes, storm stories, and plantain ideas! I picked up another plantain today to experiment with, as a matter of fact πŸ™‚

I’m going to try to keep this short yet again, at least photo-wise. We still don’t have our wireless working. I really wish I knew even a little bit about computers, because then I may have at least a 50% chance of getting it to worked. Unfortunately, I am one of those people that just pretends to know the basic things like the difference between a hard drive and whatever else is important in a computer. Therefore, my shots at troubleshooting a wireless situation are nil.
Luckily, I know how to leech.
Not so luckily, that means uploading and waiting for photos to load rivals the pace of a snail, maybe if I’m lucky a turtle. So while I’m seriously jonesin’ to read about what is going on in all of your lives – it’s just not workin’ out for me. I promise I’m not ignoring any of you – I’m just really impatient, and even when I’m patient, the photos don’t load 😦 Maybe tonight will work out better – we’ll see!
But, moving on.

Oats were welcomed back this morning – in the form of apple cranberry oats.
The base:

  • 3 T. Kamut hot cereal, 1 T. peppy kernels, 1 T. wheat bran, 1 T. Ruth’s Chia Goodness (cran-ginger)
  • 1/2 c. water, 1/2 c. PureAlmond
  • drizzle maple syrup, cinnamon
  • 1/2 chopped gala
  • dried cranberries

And then topped with:

  • chia icing
  • chopped mixed nuts
  • Mighty Maple
  • and a chutney/compote ish thang of the rest of the apple and some dried cranberries, simmered with maple and almond milk.

After a long time away from each other, I can say that the love is still there – but I am excited to keep experimenting with waffles!

Need Saturday’s Β funny story? I slept so late this morning that my mom actually came in and started poking the blanket to make sure I was alive. The funny part isn’t that this happened – the funny part is that it was still only 6:40 am.

Probably because we had a busy day ahead of us – of yard sailing, gardening, shopping, and spring-flinging. The yard sailing and spring flinging portion were relative fails, except for the library book sale. Yes, this is probably sad, but I found three cook books that I figured – for $1, why not?

And the gardening was also a huge success. First, though, we had lunch.

Bean & egg wrap with spinach, yellow pepper, garlic, and feta. My favorite bread was gone and I forgot to pull the second half of the loaf out of the freezer. Bummer. Wraps are still a large part of me, though, I do believe.

And then we gardened our lives away. Β So far, we have planted:

  • eggplant
  • spaghetti squash
  • some other form of squash (butternut, maybe? acorn? not sure – my mom did it the other day)
  • lettuce (not sure what kind)
  • spinach
  • sweet corn
  • tomatoes: 1 yellow boy, 3 Romas, 2 Beefsteak, 3 Early Girls, 3 Jet Stars
  • basil
  • oregano
  • chives
  • parsley
  • red peppers
  • green peppers

oh and my blackberry bush πŸ˜‰ Keep your fingers crossed that something decided to grow! I was so stoked to find roma tomatoes, and I think my mom was more excited to see the spaghetti squash plant than I was! I think I’d still like to get some more herbs – just because they’re so expensive to purchase fresh at the store, but cooking with fresh is so much more enjoyable than dried.

Anybody else growing green thumbs this year? Do tell what! I’d also like to grow kale, but I don’t think that’s until August or September.

Aaaaand, eventully it was dinner time. Speaking of spaghetti squash, I made us another spaghetti squash primavera with a boatload of random veggies from the fridge and some chickpea cutlets I still have left.

In there, you see fire-roasted diced tomatoes, fresh corn from the cob, portabella mushroom, yellow pepper, onion, garlic, basil, salt, and pepper. Well, and spaghetti squash, of course. I even saved some of the seeds to dry and try planting. I hope we can grow ‘sghetti squash. And eggplant. And red peppers. I want to roast my body weight in red peppers and have roasted red pepper, eggplant, hummus, and feta paninis for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Not really, but it sounds nice.

But anyways. Here’s to hoping I can catch up on some of your lives tonight. Fill me in – any fun stories or memorial day celebrations? Is everybody grillin’? I picked up my portabella grillers today! And yes, I am switching back to calling them portabellas.

_______________________________

Everybody Loves Herbs!

This may get a little boring – I’ll be honest, this isn’t Β little blurb about some interesting health fact, some new food that is the cure-all…but instead just a fun little take on cooking with herbs! I mean, why not? I love health – but I also love cooking, and showing people that the two really can go together.

What helps that most?

Herbs, of course! Who wants to eat a bland, unseasoned dish? I’ve gotta say – I’ll hula hoop for fresh basil or garlic in a dish or on a sandwich, and I don’t hula hoop for anybody.

Fresh herbs have a much more vibrant taste and the right ones will enhance anything! Β It is important to remember that fresh herbs must be kept cold, if you are purchasing them from the grocery store. It’s also important to make sure they are dry before you stow them away – if you store them when wet they are sure to spoil even more quickly! The finer you chop your fresh herbs, the more flavor they will release into the dish. Likewise, for the strongest flavor, add fresh herbs late in the cooking stage. Otherwise, the flavors may dissipate, and your expensive & delicious fresh herb flavor will be all for naught. One example where you may not want to do this is when you’re making a cold salad-like dish. In this instance, adding before refrigerating will allow them to mingle – flirt, if you will.

When it comes to dried herbs, you will have the most luck if you add them early in the cooking stage. The more heat, the more flavor they release. And make sure you keep your dried herbs sealed tightly! When properly contained, they can stay potent for six months to a year.

Some things to keep in mind:

  • You can easily dry your own herbs. Simply rinse, pat dry, and either hang to dry for 3-6 days, or lay out on some wire mesh for several days. You’ll know when they’re dry – they’ll crumble easily!
  • The worst place for herbs, spices, and seasonings is above the stove, where heat shortens their lives.
  • Shaking directly into a hot pot or pan is a no-go, too – steam could get trapped into the bottle and turn the herb/seasoning/spice moldy.
  • If your garlic clove is sprouting – go ahead and plant it for some garlic chives

What are some of your favorites? I loooove fresh basil, chives, cilantro, dill, garlic, mint, oregano, parsley, rosemary, sage, and thyme – just to name a few! And I think this east coast grill spice mix sounds lovely with some chickpeas or sweet ‘taters – or to season a veggie burger! Simply combine 2 tablespoons each of: ground cumin, paprika with 1 tablespoon each of: crushed coriander seeds, ground ginger, and ground cinnamon in addition to 1 teaspoon each of: turmeric, ground red pepper, and dry mustard.

Any seasonings you wanna spill?

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    13 Comments

    Filed under breakfast, cooking, dinner, foodblog, health, health food, healthy living, lunch, oatmeal, recipe, Uncategorized

    13 responses to “Everybody Loves Herbs

    1. Katherine: What About Summer?

      I’ll spill my seasonings: I only use dried because I do not use fresh fast enough! are dried herbs less nutritious?
      Katherine

    2. Love it!! I planted a boatload of veggies and herbs..hope they all grow!! Actually I just looked at some of my tomato plants and I already have some green cherry tomatoes! before you know it they will be ripe and juicy (home grown cherry tomatoes ARE AMAZING AND MY FAVORITE) we always grow them. No denying my love for the tomato ❀

    3. Mo

      AHH. I am so jealous of your garden. I would love so much to be able to plant all those but space is an issue. 😦 Also, I have a black thumb which is why I’m only trying to plant the herbs, since they’re the easiest. πŸ˜‰ I really hope your blackberry bush grows, though. A childhood friend (who grew up to be one of the nastiest people I’ve ever met, but that’s not the point) had a blackberry tree in her backyard and whenever I was there we’d pick them. Sometimes I wish I was still friends with her just for the free blackberries…

      Thanks for the tip about not shaking dried herbs directly over something steaming… that makes so much sense but it never occurred to me!

      I hope you’re doing well and that your wireless turns back on pronto. πŸ™‚

    4. I am a spice/herb lover! Favorites of herbs…cumin (smells like a dirty man, but I love it), rosemary, cilantro, oregano, basil, thyme, sage…um I think the list can go on and on! Unfortunately, the critters eat our plants. I mean really, I don’t eat meat to save their lives and they eat my veggie plants before they even get a chance to grow. There is something seriously wrong there. Love the oatmeal bowl! Beautiful! Enjoy your evening. Oh and no we are not grilling…my husband always eats sh*t on a shingle for Memorial Day. He says it is in honor of the soldiers…I will pass on this!

    5. I had a bean and egg wrap today too! Twins! πŸ™‚
      I loove fresh herbs, especially basil and rosemary, but mine are currently dying on my back porch. Who knows why. I water them and put them in the sun and they just wilt! Ah well. Hope you get that wireless working soon! That must be so frustrating.

    6. im way too addicted to herbs and spices. a garden of them would be a dream!!!

      have a beautiful memorial weekend ❀

    7. Michelle

      Your dinner looks soo yummy! Just absolutely perfect πŸ™‚

    8. Wow, you have quite the green thumb! My gran tried to grow squash, but it was a bit of a fail 😦 I’d love to try though! She also grows runner beans, tomatoes, rhubarb, lettuce, cucumber, courgette…quite a few!
      Herbs – chives, rosemary, thyme – probably my favourite! And if cinnamon was a herb, I’d love that too πŸ˜€
      I hope you get the internet sorted soon! πŸ™‚

    9. Haha that story is so funny!!! My mom did the same thing to me a couple of weeks ago. I wish I could sleep late so so so badly!!! I think we should start an “abnormal college student” club or something..
      I really admire you for your gardening abilities!!! I can’t grow ANYTHING. Even those herbs that are supposed to be fool proof… yeah. They aren’t, fyi. I kill everything.. and you know, that also takes skill πŸ˜‰
      My computer skills are pretty nonexistent too buuuut in comparison to my parents, I’m a computer genius. Hehe
      Love you girl!

    10. Wow, it sounds like you have an amazing garden! It will be so exciting to eat all of your own produce! πŸ˜€

      I love fresh herbs but I usually have to resort to dried ones since I can’t use them up fast enough. I find some of the dried ones just SO tasteless. Luckily when I’m at home for the summer I can get fresh ones from my family’s garden! My faves are basil, rosemary and cilantro.

    11. Rosemary, thyme (with lemon!) and basil are my summer favorites! Rosemary grows like wildfire, my mom has a bunch in the garden right now. I like to infuse olive oils with them, the flavor is insane!

      P.S sweet Garfield place mat. LOVE IT!!!!!

      Have a great weekend!

    12. I love herbs so much but haven’t been cooking with them much this season yet. I really should change that and thanks for reminding me lady!

      My boyf has a ridiculous amount of parsley, cilantro, basil, and chives growing in his appt that I am not sure what we will do with when we head east in a week or so.

      That east coast mix sounds like a great spice blend and veggie burgers will definitely be consumed for memorial day tomorrow! I hope I can post soon…and that you get some legit internet!

    13. ahah that is too funny that your mom thought you slept in and it was only 6:40!
      oh wow that wrap looks crazy good – seriously i love your photography! its gorgeous!

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