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Herbs

herbs

I love celebrating my birthday. Many friends and loved ones would claim that I enjoy celebrating it a little too much. But I ask? “Who among us doesn’t celebrate their birthdays for the entire month?” Maybe they don’t realize that the month-long celebration for me is actually more intricate and involves consciously and subconsciously setting intentions for growth and change in the year that lies ahead. So, my birthdays involve a great deal of self-reflection and self-awareness. That’s what I celebrate- that I have grown and that it’s my choice to decide where I go and grow next.

April 9, 2021

Spring is my favorite season. It always feels full of potential—the kind of potential that must make its way into the world. This sentiment feels reminiscent of my essence. All of that which is inside me must eventually come to be. Sometimes it sprouts and sometimes it blossoms. (It’s also been known to burst out even though I try to coax it to unfold and emerge more slowly.) Spring is the season for new things to be born. I was born in spring and my spirit gets giddy at the thought of reemergence and newness in my life and in my cooking.

March 29, 2021

One for Rudolph, two for me. This is one of my most whimsical recipes and one that is perfect to make with your kids the day before Christmas eve. Basically, the kids make herbal sugar cubes for Rudolph and you get amazing sugar cubes for an old-Fashioned cocktail. It’s a rather fun project for all and one that the adults can enjoy long after Santa is gone. The recipe is super easy. Some herbs, sugar and ice cube trays are really all that’s needed outside a few drops of water.

December 22, 2020

I tend to be an extremist when it comes to emotions. This is why I’ve had to really practice balance. Part of that practice started many years ago, when I had to slow down my crazy capacity for taking on more and more work and make time for empty space in my head and body. Daily yoga, meditation and breathing practices have been pivotal in my ability to understand how to achieve and (mostly) maintain balance as I move through this life thing. A general slowing down long enough to observe myself.Solitude and the ocean have also been vital in helping me reach and maintain more homeostasis. My kryptonite, or the “thing” that most throws me off balance, which I believe is rather normal, is always overwhelm. Too much uncertainty, too many MAJOR things happening at once always rocks my balance. From there I either find equilibrium or fall.

September 23, 2020

My Herby Sundried Tomatoes are one of my staple recipes. I love cherry tomatoes so much that I always have loads of them on hand. Sometimes, I over buy and don’t eat them fast enough, but that is never a problem with this recipe. This is a recipe that was brought into my repertoire so I could live in a perpetual state of cherry tomato gluttony, and I have zero shame in that.I tend to use the fresh and dried ones the same way, tossing them literally into everything (salads, soups, sandwiches, eggs, etc.) and it’s a nice change when the fresh tomatoes I had been enjoying suddenly morph into the dried version – yielding a deeper, richer, smokier version of the fresh. You can further heighten the flavor by adding fresh herbs and other spices.

August 15, 2020

Scented geraniums are one of the most widely collected and celebrated herbal plants on the planet. They come in just about every scent and color imaginable, and their most common trait is their extreme potency of flavor and scent. They are used in teas, tinctures, baking and potpourri type concoctions.Only recently have I begun to enjoy them and use them in my cooking. For years I shunned them as an overly potent potpourri ingredient. Their scent can be overwhelming in gardens, I have never enjoyed how they take over the scent of a garden. In my opinion, the scent and potency of a geranium was always a little too much to make any use of it. But then the masters showed me the way.

August 13, 2020

From the moment many of us were sent into our homes to shelter-in-place, the baking rumpus had begun. So much so that most baking supplies became scarce, sending a wave of panic over those looking for something fun and calming to occupy the foreseeable future. Well-known for my laidback attitude about having the right supplies in the kitchen and life, I knew early on something good would come of it. I certainly wasn’t about to panic about baking.People all over the globe can attest to the relaxation brought on by baking. It seems quite obvious that, during this pandemic, baking has become a nurturing way to self-soothe – as the masses can bake breads, cakes, biscuits and cookies with reckless abandon.

May 27, 2020

I make it known often that I do not have a sweet tooth and people usually assume that means I do not like dessert. That’s absolute crap. I love dessert, I just enjoy it more savory than sweet. This is a dessert for those, like me, who lean on the savory side of sweet. It also combines my two passions for recipe development- herbs and mangoes. What exactly do I mean when I say I prefer a savory dessert? It means I don’t like a lot of sugar in it. I like more earthy elements to shine through and prefer naturally sweet items to take center stage. I like a little salty nature to my dessert and a perfumy aspect really gets me excited. Flavorful and potent fresh herbs in desserts lead to more character and depth – sugar add nothing but sweet and that’s just one dimensional. I also enjoy a tad of acid, balanced by some fat; butter, cheese or cream.

May 20, 2020

In my ‘circle’ (which isn’t made up of many), I’m known for my creativity in the kitchen. Because I live out in the middle of nowhere, I tend to get excited to have guests, and it often gives my creativity a super boost. The anticipation of all the joy to be had in cooking and sharing with friends and loved ones gets my creative juices flowing; my posse of eaters around the globe are always elated to dine at my house. They know that in addition to delivering a marvelous and meaningful time, I will bring the ultra-weird and unexpected to the table and it will all taste delightful.The truth is, I cook like this all the time – even for myself (just look at my Instagram for proof). I think the main difference between cooking for myself and cooking for others is that I have to plan and, therefore, I have to think it through a bit more. I can’t deny that, because I’m mostly here alone, it feels special to have people over. So, I do like to make sure these occasions feel like a special event, for both me and my guests. I’m not sure if most my guests realize that the most joyful part of me making dinner for them is in the dreaming up of it – the part I do all alone.

May 11, 2020

I am deeply obsessed with all things spring. Perhaps my enthusiasm for fresh herbs was born in spring, when we get to witness herbs shoot up from the cold ground of winter with expeditious vigor and vibrancy. Mint, parsley, chives and chive blossoms are the first to appear in our gardens ready for us to toss their tender leaves into salads, soups, pesto, and sauces.Today I want to place a special focus on mint (specifically spearmint) and chive blossoms and, in particular, how beautifully they relate to asparagus – another of spring’s powerful popups. (I’ve more recently spent some time ruminating on the joys of parsley, so you can check out those posts for more.)

April 23, 2020
Herbs | My Herbal Roots