Harvesting herbs for the kitchen

Harvesting herbs for the kitchen has to be one of the most enjoyable gardening activity to take part in. This year the herb garden has been phenomenal and I have been able to harvest so much  that I had to be a little bit more inventive in my cooking experimentation.

Drying bay leaves for the kitchen and to make firelighters for friends

Drying bay leaves for the kitchen and to make firelighters for friends

 

Basil pesto an other herbs and garlic

Basil pesto an other herbs and garlic

So aside from drying my herbs by the bag full for teas and potions and lotions (health and skin care) as well as first aid balms and syrups, I also made lots of condiments, some in dry powder form and others suspended in olive oil and put into ice-cubes and frozen so that I have cooking basics to hand.

Sunflowers - the seeds are harvested and used fresh for baking or dried and used as next year's seeds few course, as well as dried to munch on.

Sunflowers – the seeds are harvested and used fresh for baking or dried and used as next year’s seeds few course, as well as dried to munch on.

I made garlic and mint for my meat dishes, fennel seeds and fennel herb salt rubs, sage butter, basil and pumpkin/sunflower nut pesto, salsa of every kind and I then threw in every seed, nut and herb I had that was left over to make base sauces for gratins, pasta and vegetable soups.

Herb garden in summer

Herb garden in summer

Phew! Having more time in the kitchen since I have been ill means that I really got going on the preserving in every which way possible.

Fennel seeds - they are used fresh to incorporate into smoothies, dried as seasoning for vegetables and breads

Fennel seeds – they are used fresh to incorporate into smoothies, dried as seasoning for vegetables and breads

 

Bentley going through herb garden, here smelling some thyme

Bentley going through herb garden, here smelling some thyme

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