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Go fresh with herbs

Posted by vicki l.

There aren't many things that bring a fresh from the garden taste to meals than using fresh herbs. The added bonus is many of them have wonderful antioxidants and other healthy properties. The big thing to remember is that you'll need three times the amount of dried herbs. Also you'll want to cut them into small pieces to release more of their wonderful oils and flavor. Another thing to note is that fresh herbs should be added at the end of your cooking -- about 20 to 45 minutes before a meal is ready. The longer food is cooked, the more herb flavor you'll lose. Herbs such as basil, chives, cilantro, dill leaves, parsley, marjoram and mint should be added just minutes before serving.
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My family grows basil parsley on their patio, and they are great additions to almost any dish out there-even if it's a vegetable dish! We use basil to make pesto sauce, all you need to do once it's blended and prepared is use a little light butter and add it to your pasta.

Here are some tips: often, you can use less of a fresh herb than the weight of its dried cousin -- the taste is more pungent. I am whatever the opposite of a green thumb is. I know of the laziest party people who take better care of plants than I do. That being said, I have some rosemary that I left outside in the snow. I guess they are of the same family as the fir tree or something... it is alive and the flavor is even STRONGER! I only have to use one or two leaves in a whole pot of sauce.

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