You are here

The Blog: Let's Talk Gardening

From our Table to Yours…

Growing your own herbs is a rewarding and efficient way to making it easy to harvest fresh herbs for cooking, and with Thanksgiving a little more than a week away, it’s never too soon to start planning your menu. So, here are some of our favorite crowd-pleasing holiday recipes using your very own fresh herbs. These classics combine fresh rosemary, thyme and sage to create dishes that will dazzle your guests! Once the holidays are over, place your herbs in a kitchen window sill. And remember, herbs also make a great hostess gift to bring along to your Thanksgiving gathering. Bon appétit!

Sage – comes in lots of varieties including Garden, Golden, Blue, Pineapple, Tri-color and Clary, all of which can be used in cooking. Sage is a must in stuffing for poultry. Roast it with pork; add to butter and sauté chicken along with it. Sage also goes well in egg and cheese dishes. Try a little crumbled dry sage over a bowl of black-eyed peas. Dried leaves will keep their flavor for years.

Thyme – like sage, this herb is also available in many different varieties including Common, Woolly, "Mother-of-Thyme", Lemon, English, Silver, and Golden. Thyme is the perfect compliment to poultry, fish, soup and vegetable dishes. Add a pinch of thyme to a tablespoon of honey and add to drained cooked carrots and onions. Thyme, along with sage, rosemary and oregano should be considered the basics of every herb garden.

Rosemary – one of the oldest herbs known to man and is available in many varieties and forms, all of which can be used in cooking. Some top choices for Hampton Roads include Tuscan Blue, Arp and Barbeque, so named for its long stems which can be used for skewers when grilling to add flavor. Rosemary is a natural for pork and poultry dishes. Use a branch of Rosemary as a basting brush for barbecued chicken or as a simple garnish. Place a few springs on top of a roast or baked chicken.

Our Favorite Herb Stuffing Recipe:

• 12 cups slightly dry bread
• 1/3 cup finely chopped onion
• 1 1/2 tsp. salt
• 1 tsp. ground sage
• 1 tsp. dried thyme, crushed
• 1 tsp. dried rosemary, crushed
• 1 cup of chicken broth
• 6 tablespoons of butter, melted

Combine bread, onion, salt, sage, thyme, and rosemary. Add broth and butter; toss lightly to mix. Use to stuff a 12-pound turkey or bake covered, in a 2-quart casserole at 325º until heated through, about one hour.

Our Favorite Herb Butter Recipe:

Spread it on toast or eggs at breakfast. Toss it with pasta at lunch. Melt it on fish or chicken at dinner. And, of course use on fresh bread for your holiday feast.

• Dash of salt and pepper
• 1 tsp thyme
• 1 tsp sage
• 1 tsp rosemary
• 1 stick unsalted of butter

Combine all ingredients in a small bowl. Mix well with a spoon until combined and all ingredients are incorporated. Place butter mixture into plastic wrap and roll to form a log shape. Wrap tightly and store in refrigerator.