Category Archives: Herbs

Tasting Lavender

At a potluck last week I was eager to taste the lavender lemonade, something I’d never made myself and drunk only once or twice before. But the drink was sweetened to a child’s taste; I guessed it had been made … Continue reading

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Another Use for Angelica

Blooming exactly in accordance with European folk tradition is this Angelica archangelica, whose flowers burst forth in my garden on May 8, the feast day of St. Michael the Archangel. When you see flowering angelica you may have missed your … Continue reading

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An Appetizer for Spring: Fried Angelica Sheaths

While browsing in Patience Gray’s Honey from a Weed yesterday, I came upon a description of two angelica species, Angelica archangelica and A. sylvestris: “Both these angelicas grow wild near abandoned ruins and damp places. In February the Salentines [the … Continue reading

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Bartering for New Tastes

Last Sunday I attended my first food swap, at an alpaca farm on Rodgers Mountain. In this first-time swap in a quiet corner of the Willamette Valley, only seven households participated, but we needed no more. I’d been afraid that … Continue reading

Posted in Herbs, Pickles, Sweet preserves, Vegetables | Tagged | 9 Comments

Dilly Umbels

People who don’t keep gardens often ask me what a dill head is. One of the copy editors for The Joy of Pickling didn’t know. I tried the word umbel on her. Its meaning seems obvious when you consider that … Continue reading

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A Good Use for a Glut of Coriander: Green Chutney from India

When we call an edible green plant an herb, we usually mean that we use it in small quantities, for extra flavor in a prepared dish or even just as a decorative garnish. But some herbs, such as parsley, mint, … Continue reading

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Hop Shoots for Dinner

Yesterday, incredibly, the sun shone nearly all day, and the earth dried out enough for me to pull the grass from around our hop plant. I found some hop shoots as tall as a foot and many others barely out … Continue reading

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Peppermint for Tea

One of my favorite things about summer is the smell of peppermint—from the fields, after a cutting; from the tubs full of fresh-chopped mint, as they’re trucked by our place on the way to the distillery; and even from the … Continue reading

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Linden Flower Tea

The linden trees are blooming, and the bees and I are grateful as ever for their profusion of fragrant flowers. My three lindens appear to be littleleaf, Tilia cordata, a species native to northern Europe. I can’t be sure, because … Continue reading

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Tabbouleh for a Warm Spring Day

During a long, cool spring, like the one we experienced in the Northwest last year and the one we’re grousing about now, the rare warm day is an occasion for celebration. In summer I often try to satisfy my craving … Continue reading

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