Herbs are great for cooking as well as for medicinal purposes. we list a few unusual herbal recipes for you to try out. Please let us have your herb recipes if you have something a little out of the ordinary. You can email them to us here
Needless to say, it is very important if you are growing your own herbs to make sure that you have the identification right! Not all herbs are suitable for culinary use. It is unfortunate that such plants as Digitalis (Foxgloves) are classed as herbs, for they are most certainly NOT herbs suitable for cooking. To make matters worse, young Foxgloves and Comfrey have leaves that are almost identical to the inexperienced gardener. Foxglove leaves - and all parts of the plant are potentially lethal. PLEASE make sure that you have correct labeling of your herbs before use in cooking.
As with all vegetables in cooking, the sooner they can reach the pot from the soil, the better they will taste. However, herbs can be dried - and still retain their flavour throughout the winter months.
If you like the ideas of these recipes, then all of the herbs can be grown with the easy to follow information on this herb area of the site.
Angelica - Delicious Florentines!
Anise - Anise tea and Tomato Anise soup.
Alfalfa - Alfalfa, Avocado and sesame Mayo!
Basil Recipes - Tomato Basil and Mozzarella salad: Basil Bloody Mary
Bay Leaf - Potato Chowder
Black Pepper - Black Pepper Rice : Peppered Pork
Caraway - Leek and Caraway puree: Caraway suet Dumplings
Chervil - A recipe for Chervil soup
Chives - Bacon and Cheese potatoes - and scrambled eggs
Cloves - Use in rich fruit cake
Coriander - Coronation Turkey with coriander
Dill Recipes - Dill, Lemon and Caper sauce: Dill Vinegar
Garlic recipes - Garlic butter and Garlic Pork Crumble
Ginseng - With Green Tea - Ginseng with Chicken breasts
Horseradish - A great 'dip' for the BBQ or parties : 'Chicken and Horseradish Barbecue sauce'
Lemon Balm - Cream of Potato soup with Lemon Balm: Lemon Balm and Almond Ring
Oregano - Pasta pepper sauce
Parsley - Lemon, Parsley and Thyme stuffing and Parsley Sauce
Rosemary - Potato and rosemary scones - Rosemary and Lemon Muffins
Sage - Sage Butter and Sage and Onion Bread!
Tarragon - Chicken with Tarragon sauce
Thyme - Dover sole with Thyme sauce
Angelica - The Archangel Herb - Angelica archangelica.
82g (3 1/2oz) butter
100g (4oz) icing sugar
60ml (4tbsp) fresh milk
100g (4oz) flour
75g (3oz) chopped angelica
50g (2oz) finely chopped cherries
75g (3oz) flaked almonds
5ml (1tsp) lemon juice
100g (4oz) plain chocolate
1. Cover two large baking trays with non-stick paper
2. Put 75g (3oz) butter, milk and sugar into a saucepan. Stand over a low heat until butters melts.
3. Remove from heat. Stir in flour, peel, cherries, almonds and lemon juice.
4. Leave on side until completely cold.
5. Spoon equal amounts of mixture (well apart for spreading) on to baking tray.
6. Bake at 190c, 375f, gas 5 for 10minutes, or until golden brown
7. Leave until lukewarm. Carefully lift off baking tray.
8. Cool completely on a wire cooling tray
9. Melt chocolate and remaining butter in a basin standing over a saucepan of hot water.
10. Put a heaped teaspoon on to each Florentine.
11. Spread evenly with a knife
12. Mark wavy lines with a fork on each one. Leave until chocolate hardens before serving
13. Store in an airtight container.
1 Teaspoon of dried Anise leaves, or
2 Teaspoons of fresh leaves
1 cup of boiling water
1 Teaspoon of Honey
1 Slice of Honey
Place leaves in cup add boiling water over them
Let rest for 5 minutes
Serve with lemon slice.
Tomato Anise Soup
2 Tbsp Vegetable Oil
1 Large Onion, chopped
2 sticks of Celery
1 large Carrot, chopped
900gm/2lb Tomatoes, peeled and chopped
960ml/32fl.oz. Fresh Vegetable Stock
6 Whole Star Anise
1 Level Tbsp freshly chopped Parsley
1. Heat the oil in a large saucepan
2. Add the celery and carrot and continue to cook for a further 5 minutes, stirring from time to time, until the vegetables begin to brown.
3. Add the tomatoes together with their juice, stock, whole star anises and parsley, mix well and bring to the boil. Reduce heat, cover and simmer for 40 minutes.
4. Remove the star anise; allow cooling a little then transferring to a liquidizer and process until smooth.
5. Return to heat until hot and serve.
85g/3oz sesame seeds
110g/4oz unblanched almonds
4 tbsp olive oil
1 tsp Dijon mustard
1 lemon, juice only
1 tbsp cider vinegar
2 tsp tamari soy sauce (optional)
pinch of ground black pepper
15ml/3 tbsp water
2 perfect avocados - ½ per person
100g/4oz alfalfa sprouts, rinsed and drained
1. Reserve a spoonful of the sesame seeds and roast the rest in a dry pan for 5 minutes.
2. Put everything else, except the avocado and alfalfa, into a blender or food processor. Whiz on full power until you have a mayonnaise-like sauce. You may need to add a little extra water or lemon juice.
3. Cut the avocados in half and remove the stones. Place the cut sides down and score the skin with the tip of a sharp knife down the middle. You should now be able to gently pull off the skins in two pieces, leaving the pear halves intact.
4. Divide the alfalfa sprouts evenly between four serving plates, flatten the mounds a little and gently loosen them. Place an avocado half on top of the sprouts and cut it across into slices, holding it together with the other hand. Push gently to fan out the slices evenly. Pour the sauce on top and sprinkle with the remaining seeds. Serve as a lunch of first course.
2lb Ripe Tomatoes
4oz Mozzarella cheese sliced
16 Fresh Basil leaves
4 Tsp Olive Oil
1. Slice Tomatoes ½ inch thick, place on a large plate
2. Add cheese
3. Put basil leaves on top
4. Drizzle with the Olive Oil
5. Season with Pepper
15fl oz/375ml Tomato juice
4fl oz/100ml Lemon juice
2tbsp creamed Horseradish
2tbsp Worcestershire sauce
Big bunch of Basil
1. In a large pan mix Tomato juice, Lemon juice, Horseradish, Worcestershire sauce and a drop of Tabasco.
2. Simmer for five minutes, allow to cool and then refrigerate.
3 .Fill a glass with ice add a shot of Vodka
4. Add some finely copped Basil and fill up with Bloody Mary mix
5. Add a whole Basil leaf, to float on top.
1lb potatoes par-boiled, diced
2 tbsp butter
4 pints cold water
2 peeled onions
1 peeled carrot, diced
1 bay leaf
250ml tined tomatoes
A sprig of thyme
1. Remove all the skin and bones from the fish
2. Melt butter in pan
3. Add onions and carrots and fry for 1 minute
4. Add the fish, water, bay leaf and thyme, cover and bring to boil.
5. Simmer for 1 hour, then remove the herbs
6. Add the tomatoes and potatoes; simmer until potatoes are soft, season with
salt and pepper to taste.
1 tsp Cumin seeds
1 tsp Black peppercorns
1 tsp Salt
200g Basmati rice
2 tbsp vegetable oil
2 Bay leaves
1. Heat oil in a pan and add bay leaves, cumin seeds and peppercorns and fry of a few seconds.
2. Add rice and stir for a 4 minutes
3. Add water, twice depth of rice, bring to boil
4. Reduce heat and cover pan, simmer for 15 minutes until rice is tender and liquid is absorbed.
1lb Pork fillet cut into strips
Freshly ground pepper
8oz Carrots sliced into strips
1 large onion, chopped
4oz Mushrooms sliced
5floz fresh cream
Parsley to garnish
1. Liberally sprinkle pork with pepper
2. Melt butter in a large frying pan. Add pork and carrots, stir-fry for 5 minutes
3. Add onion and mushrooms and cook until soft
4. Stir in cream and heat through
5. Serve with parsley.
2lb Leeks, chopped
1tsp Caraway seeds
3tbsp Fromage frais
Salt and pepper
1. Melt butter and sweat the leeks and caraway seeds until soft, for 10 minutes
2. Add a little water and continue to simmer
3. Drain then puree until smooth, add the fromage frais and season to taste.
Caraway suet Dumplings
300g/10oz Beef suet
300g/10oz Self-raising flour
2 tbsp finely chopped leaves
Salt and Pepper
Water to bind
1. Place suet, flour, salt and pepper into a bowl
2. Add caraway leaves, slowly add water and mix until a firm dough is reached
3. Make into medium sized balls and add to soups of stews of the remaining 20 minutes of cooking time.
4-6 tbsp Butter
4 tbsp flour
6 tbsp chopped chervil
2 pints vegetable stock
Salt to season
2 tbsp single cream
1. Sauté chervil in butter in a sauce pan.
2. Add the plain flour , smooth with a little stock
3. Add rest of stock and season
4. Bring to boil, reduce heat and simmer for 20 minutes
5. Liquidize, then serve and swirl in cream.
2x225g (8oz) potatoes
2 bacon rashers
175g (6oz) cottage cheese
2.5ml (1/2tsp) chopped chives
50g (2oz) hard cheese grated
1. Wash and dry potatoes prick skins and bake at 200c (400f) gas 6 for 1 hour or until soft
2. Crisply grill bacon
3. Chop bacon and mix with cottage and chives
4. Cut open potatoes and spoon in filling
5. Top with grated cheese
6. Serve with salad.
30ml (2tbsp) fresh milk
Salt and pepper
14g (1/4oz butter
1. Break eggs into a bowl, add milk and seasoning and beat until mixed
2. Melt butter in a small saucepan
3. Put in eggs and stir over a gentle heat moving cooked eggs from bottom and sides of pan
4. Remove from heat and add chives
5. Serve with toast.
225g (8oz) Flour
5ml (1tsp) Mixed spice
2.5ml (1/2tsp) Ground cloves
2.5ml (1/2tsp) Ground cinnamon
5ml (1tsp) cocoa powder
175g (6oz) Butter
175g (6oz) soft brown sugar
15ml (1tsp) black treacle
5ml (1tsp) each grated orange and lemon rind
550g (1 1/4lb) mixed fruit, currants, raisins and sultanas
100g (4oz) chopped cherries
15ml (1tbsp) milk
1. Line an 8inch round tin
2. Sift flour and all spices together with cocoa powder
3. Cream butter, sugar and treacle together until light and creamy
4. Add orange and lemon rind
5. Beat in one egg at a time adding one tbsp of flour with each egg
6. Stir in all fruit
7. Fold in dry in remaining dry ingredients with milk
8. Transfer to tin and bake in pre-heated oven, 150c/300f/gas 2, for 4-41/2 hours until a skewer comes out clean
9. Leave in tin for 15 minutes and then turn out onto a wire rack to cool.
1 finely chopped onion
15g (1/2oz) butter
15ml (1tbsp) curry powder
350g (12oz) mango chutney
45og (1lb) Greek yoghurt
45ml (3tbsp) mayonnaise
10ml (2tsp) tomato puree
450g (1lb) cooked turkey diced
2 tbsp chopped Coriander leaves
1. Cook onion in butter until soft
2. Add curry powder, stir for 1 minute
3. Add chutney and heat through
4. Stir in yoghurt. Mayonnaise and tomato puree, heat through
5. Add turkey and simmer for 15 minutes
6. Serve and add coriander leaves.