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Herbs: Tips and Extras

Herb Tips & Extras

Some other ways with herbs:

• Herb butters for meat, fish, vegetables, pasta, risotto, sandwiches et al. Use any herb you like, including strong ones such as sage and delicate ones such as chervil and parsley. Quantities depend on the variety and personal taste, but think in terms of 1 tbsp chopped sage or rosemary per 100g of butter or 2-3 tbsp of other herbs. Work the herbs into softened butter with 1-3 tsp of lemon juice. Season with sea salt and black pepper. Roll into a fat sausage in cling film, keep in the freezer and slice off as required.

• Herb omelette or scrambled egg: add 1-2 tbsp chopped fresh herbs for every 2-3 eggs.

• Herb mayo: add 1-2 tablespoons of chopped fresh parsley, coriander, chervil, mint or dill or torn basil leaves to a standard mayo made with 1 egg yolk and 150 ml of oil.

• Pistou for soup, tomatoes, pasta, pizza, ciabatta or a Greek salad: process 30g of basil leaves with 1 or 2 cloves of garlic and 75 ml of olive oil. If using a pestle and mortar, mash the basil and garlic to a paste, then slowly incorporate the oil.

• Basil oil: put 30g of washed and dried basil leaves (a few stalks don’t matter) in a jam jar. Top up with 250ml olive oil and leave in a sunny place for 3-5 days. Strain into a clean bottle.

• Simple herb vinegar: Pack a sterilised jam jar with sprigs of washed and dried tarragon, rosemary or thyme. Top up with 250 ml good quality white wine or cider vinegar. Seal tightly and leave in a cool place for at least 2 weeks. Strain the vinegar into a sterilised screw-cap bottle. Use within 4 months.

• Use woody stems of rosemary as skewers for barbecuing or grilling.

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