>> Tuesday, July 20, 2010
Herbs herbs herbs.
I love herbs, and yet, if you are a city-dweller and don't have a garden (or even a small deck), herbs are a pain in the butt. They are pretty expensive, come packaged in not-so-small portions, and go bad quickly. I am always scrambling to find uses for them.
Having a CSA boxshare compounds the problem even more. All of a sudden you have no control over which herbs you get week to week (maybe a ton, maybe none!) and then you still have the same problem of having to use them up (or preserve them somehow) reasonably quickly.
This is why the Twitter community is so great. I tweeted my problem, and within minutes I had all sorts of suggestions. This one is from Jennie, who suggested that I make a compound butter, which I could then freeze!
This is a great way to use up herbs because you can freeze the butter while the herbs are still fresh and full of flavor. The butter will last a long time in the freezer, and you can melt it on top of fish, spread it on toast, toss with roasted vegetables - the possibilities are endless!
And you aren't limited to these herbs, of course. Alton Brown has a great recipe that incorporates sage, rosemary, thyme, and chives.
Herb Butter Inspired by the Food Network
1 stick unsalted butter (8 Tb) at room temperature
1 1/2 teaspoons minced scallions
1 1/2 teaspoons minced fresh dill
1 1/2 teaspoons minced fresh parsley leaves
1/2 teaspoon freshly squeezed lime or lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
Pinch freshly ground black pepper
Let butter warm up to room temperature. Combine butter with chopped up herbs, lime or lemon juice, salt and pepper.Once the butter is at room temperature, you should be able to mix everything pretty easily with a fork or spoon.
You can serve as is (over toast, fish, meat, etc.), or roll it into a log (using parchment, wax, or plastic wrap) and freeze for at least 2 hours. The Hungry Mouse has a great step-by-step visual tutorial on her blog.
And then you're set! You have these nice butter discs to last you for awhile as a topping on all sorts of food.