Thursday, April 16, 2009

The Return of Green

Hayfever, thunderstorms, and irritating late frosts aside - I always look forward to spring.

Things get so brown and tired here at the end of summer, and winter is usually dreary in these parts. The explosion of lush green growth always fills my heart with optimism that things will work out OK.

Take this old house I photographed today. Even with its lovely decay, there's an air of hopefulness that wasn't there just a couple of weeks ago:

farmersville color

My garden is even showing signs of waking up, even with the recent unexpected bite of frost we struggled through. The iris patch on the side of our house is in full tilt:

iris 2009

And my oregano is growing so fast I'm about to make my first cutting.

oregano

Throughout the spring, summer, and into the fall, I mince up herbs on a regular basis. Usually a mixture of oregano, basil, and time. It takes just a few minutes with a chef's knife on a cutting board. While I chop up the herbs, I have a kettle of water coming to a boil on the stove. I fill ice cube trays with the minced herbs, and cover with boiling water. The ice cube trays go into the freezer, and the cubes get put into freezer bags when they are solid.

Its a great way to keep "fresh" herbs available all the time. I just pop out a cube or two and drop them into stuff I'm cooking. You can defrost in the microwave, or just drop the frozen herb cubes into stews, sauces, etc.

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