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Posts Tagged ‘herbs’

by Sarah Steimer

Roasted tomato-carrot soup

There are piles of carrots at the farmers market right now, and the tomatoes are starting to look a little softer than a month ago. It’s the perfect excuse to throw these market stragglers into the oven, into a pot and then into your stomach. Tweak the recipe to your liking, maybe add some roasted corn or some leftover rice. Whatever route you take, it’ll be very satisfying and simple.

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by Sarah Steimer

Broccoli and herb-stuffed portobellas

Vegetarian meals can’t be filling, you say? Yeah, eat this and try telling me that. Bill and I were as stuffed as can be (really, no pun intended) after we each had one of these mushrooms.

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by Caitlin Saniga

Heirloom tomato spaghetti with fresh basil

Please forgive me for sharing what may be the simplest, most generic summer meal. I can’t get enough of heirloom tomatoes!

  • 4 medium heirloom tomatoes, the more colorful, the better
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, plus more
  • salt and pepper, to taste
  • 2 shallots
  • 4 garlic cloves
  • 1/4 cup basil leaves
  • 1 8-ounce package spaghetti

Chop the tomatoes and place them in a large bowl, along with their juices. Drizzle the olive oil over top, and season well with salt and pepper. Let the tomatoes rest.

Mince the shallots and garlic. In a small saucepan, heat a couple splashes of olive oil over medium heat. Add the shallots, season with salt and pepper, and cook until softened, about 5-7 minutes. Next, add the garlic and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute. Remove from the heat, and add to the bowl with the tomatoes. Tear the basil leaves, and add them to the bowl. Stir to combine, and let rest while preparing the pasta.

Cook the pasta according to package directions, and drain. Add the pasta to the bowl with the tomatoes, and toss well to coat with the sauce. Divide among 4 bowls, and serve warm.

Makes 4 servings.

Recipe adapted from: Mission Delectable

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by Caitlin Saniga

Herbal balsamic vinaigrette

I serve this dressing drizzled over fresh beet greens, roasted beets, and toasted walnuts. Use whatever herbs you have — dill, mint and tarragon might also be nice.

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by Caitlin Saniga

Cucumber-rice salad with tahini dressing, dill and mint

Grain-based salads are my favorite. Exhibit A: This red rice salad with cucumber, cilantro and mint is one of my go-tos. Exhibit B: This barley salad with spring vegetables makes my mouth water just thinking about it. Now I’ve found a new rice salad worthy of joining the recipe rotation. Tahini gives the dressing a nutty creaminess that I love, and cucumbers and herbs brighten things up. Enjoy!

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by Caitlin Saniga

Sauteed cucumbers with butter and herbs

Who would ever have imagined warm cucumbers could be tasty? Sauteing them in butter softens and sweetens them, and the nutmeg and parsley keep the flavors fresh.


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by Caitlin Saniga

It's just about the end of herb season, and I'm getting ready to put my bunch to bed.

Did you grow herbs this summer? This was the first time I tried. I started most of my plants from seeds, watered them every day, rotated their planters in the sunlight and did my best to keep the pests away. It was so wonderful to watch my diligence pay off. Most of the herbs grew into huge plants, with many that flowered. Here's some purple sage that did really well at the beginning of the summer.

It was so convenient to grab whichever herbs I needed for dinner right from the planters on my front porch. I used lots of this thyme, and basil, cilantro, oregano and dill. Now I swear by using fresh herbs when possible. Fresh is the best!

Did any of your plants flower and then dry up like this basil plant? That's great! It means you can harvest the seeds to plant next year. That's what I'm doing. It's so simple! You just snip off the dry flowers and pinch the base to release the tiny black seeds. Each basil flower holds about four seeds.

But how will you keep track of those baby seeds until next year? I got thrifty and used some leftover tea envelopes. I reinforced the seams of the envelope with tape and labeled it before placing the seeds inside. Lipton envelopes worked nicely because they have a foldover flap.

And I'm using a magnet to keep the packets of seeds on the fridge until next year. Dear guardian angel Lindsay Lohan, please keep my basil safe until next year, you crazy, weak magnet, you.

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