Monday, November 11, 2013


I go through bouts of domesticity every now and then.* Most are connected to circumstance - and having a day off. The juxtaposition of Veterans Day and the cooling temperatures meant that I had a day to do some tidying up in the garden. This forced me to ponder what to do with several of the bundles of green things I had growing in the garden.

This year we actually had more parsley than ever before, after years of failing to grow any. I'm not sure this will work, but I've seen many suggestions that one should make a pesto-type thing with the leaves, and freeze in ice cube trays. So that I've done - albeit with a mixture of oil and water, and it's more of a slurry than a proper pesto, I'd say. I've read some posts that say to add the garlic/pine nuts/parmesan now, some say later, so I'll stick with the later, seeing as the parsley really is for parsley use, rather than to accompany pasta.

The lavender - two types! - I've hung up to dry. This is supposed to happen in a darkish, cool place, which conveniently describes our basement-based bedroom, so that smells glorious right now.

The thyme - goodness, SO much of it. I've frozen a portion - only a portion so as to test this method. This is frozen without cover, at all, and apparently the leaves will all loosen and drop off as early as tomorrow, and I can then put them in a jar to keep frozen for the next year.

I'm most excited about the lemon verbena. I followed various blogs and decided to blitz with sugar (1/2 cup of the latter to accompany two cups of the former, albeit with an additional few leaves of basil that were clinging to life in the garden). This is now flattened in a sandwich bag in the freezer, and apparently I can just break off chunks as and when I feel like it - to go on fruit, ice cream, to be dissolved and added to drinks to bring back the taste of summer... you get the idea. Of course, I had a sneaky taste to make sure it was adequate, and it appears to be rather lovely right now, so I'm very much looking forward to using it - in a gimlet, for sure, and this concoction, although I'm not sure I'll be able to bring myself to call it a jamtini...

* That bout of domesticity has been highly rewarding, as we've ploughed through the chutney and, at this rate, will be out of it well before the end of the year.