Sunday, November 20, 2022
Add a fresh edge to your Thanksgiving dinner by using herbs straight from your own garden. Herbs can be harvested all the way through the entire winter in most years. Traditional vegetables used for flavoring the Thanksgiving feast are also harvestable at this time of year, like carrots, onions and celery.
Herbs are easy and care free to grow and almost all of them are perennials. That means you plant once and they come back year after year. For more details on growing your own herbs, see my blog here Start a kitchen herb garden!
This Thanksgiving we are having the traditional turkey. Sides will be green bean casserole (homegrown from the freezer), mashed cauliflower with gravy in place of mashed potatoes, and fresh salad greens from the garden. Desserts planned are coconut cream pie, pecan pie and pumpkin pie (using homegrown Ginger's Pride winter squash in the freezer).
For the turkey, I'll season with salt, pepper and homegrown poultry seasoning. Poultry seasoning recipe made from dried herbs:
3 Tbl sage
1 Tbl parsley
1 Tbl thyme
1 Tbl marjoram or oregano
1 Tbl rosemary
For the gravy, I use my mother-in-law's recipe seasoned with 2 tablespoons of my homegrown Herbes De Provence mix from our garden dried herbs. It is simply a mix of the dried herbs from this year's herbs. I use it on many dishes. Make your own "Herbes de Provence"
If I was feeling super ambitious, I would make seasoned butter. It is pretty simple, just melt 1/2 cup of butter, mix in 2 tablespoons of herbs and put into molds to solidify and have pretty shaped butter for the dinner table for the homemade bread. You can remove from mold by placing the mold in warm water and tilting the mold over so the butter drops out of the mold.
For seasoned salt, I make my own blend with mainly herbs from the garden. Here is the recipe for my seasoned salt:
5/8 cup coarse sea salt
2 tablespoons small hot peppers
2 tablespoons juniper berries
4 bay leaves
1 tablespoon rosemary
2 sticks of cinnamon or turmeric
1 1/2 tablespoons sage
I do buy the cinnamon and sea salt, but the rest is either foraged or grown in the garden. For other ideas: Using herbs, flowers and fruit for flavored sugars and salts
For the salad, I will add chives from the garden. You can also make a simple oil and vinegar dressing with added homegrown herbs for extra flavor.
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