Archives for posts with tag: Thyme

Sweet basil gets alot of protection and watering this year of the long hot summer and is growing like never before.

One of my favorite herbs, I need a lot. Along with thyme and oregano, it makes up my version of the herbs of provence, which I use it in my herb miso as well as a score of other recipes.

Lots of herbs to dry. 


Some of the herbs need to be started early, especially the ones that germenate slowly, are very small and take a long time to get going – like basil, thyme, chamomile etc.  

 

Oregano is a problem too. I always seem to get the wrong kind, so I am trying several and will watch over them better to find out which is best this time. 

Many people start tomatoes and peppers early, but I don’t have enough space, warmth and lighting for them, so I will buy plants from others who do. 

Later I’ll sow a number of salads, brassica, etc for planting out in May, and June, and a couple weeks after that I’ll start pumpkins, maize, etc for planting out in June. Hopefully everything will be just the right size when the weather is perfect for planting out in the crop circles. 

Now for a batch of Herb Miso
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To the usual 2 year rice miso, I add some home grown herbs. This time; basil, thyme, oregano and some garlic to be fermented along with the swedish eco soybeans, rice koji and salt.

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Probably the last miso this season, I made a larger batch with 1 kilo of Chinese organic soybeans, 1 kilo of rice koji and 460 gm seasalt. After the ordinary washing, soaking, boiling and grinding, I mixed all the ingredients and grinded some more, and then put about half into a 2 liter jar.

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The remaining portion got an additional mix of herbs to make an herbal miso. I mixed in garlic, thyme, rosemary, oregano, sage and basil, and put it into jars.

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Todays result. Now to wait 2 years for the fermentation to do it’s wonders.

In the meantime there is a lot of watering, weeding and building on the gothic greenhouse to do. And next week we take a vacation to the far north for some camping and hiking etc.

Soon after the snow melts away in the early spring, we can find herbs sprouting, like nettles, chives, garlic and parsley, for early seasoning. Now all the herbs are in full growth and starting to flower.

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It is time to pick and dry for later use. Here are my favorite culinary herbs spread out to dry.

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Thyme, sage, oregano, basil and rosemary.

Soon I’ll be making another batch of herb miso, using this combination plus garlic.

Fresh herbs are best, but for a month now we have been collecting and drying many herbs for use the rest of the year.

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Oregano, thyme and basil

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The list is long. My favorites are garlic and basil, and also the South France mix ‘Herbes de Provence’. My mix includes thyme, basil and oregano as the base with perhaps some sage and rosemary.

These herbs are used, of course, in a lot of cooking but also as a flavoring in pickles (with dill) and in my herbal miso.

Many of the herbs have gone wild like these oregano among the peonies and roses.

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Or is it marjoram? I’m always unsure. I just make sure to pick the strongest smelling stuff.

The last batch of miso for this season will be an herb miso. I confess, it’s my invention, I think. I have not found anything like it anywhere in the world, including Japan and China, but I’m sure there must be someone, somewhere that has developed something similar.

This is a standard 2 year rice miso with herbs thrown in to ferment along with the soybeans. It’s miso with a European touch – very tasty and quite popular too.

Here’s the recipe.

Ingredients:
700 gr soybeans
700 gr rice koji
320 gr salt
1 tbs (tablespoon) thyme
1 tbs oregano
1 tbs basil
5 or so cloves of garlic

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Follow the standard recipe found in the menu above under ‘How to make miso’.

I soaked the beans yesterday morning, boiled them for 4 hours, then let them sit overnight. This morning I ground the beans (I’ve found grinding them before adding the other ingredients is easier on the machine).

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Then add the koji and grind some more. Add the herbs after grinding and mix thoroughly.

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Pack in a large canning jar and put away to ferment for 2 years.

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I like to leave the garlic cloves whole or halved. It is a delight to find a pickled clove – the flavor is so mild yet pungent. Garlic lovers can put in a lot more than I do. You can also use many other favorite herbs such as sage, rosemary, bay leaf etc.

Mine are all home grown.

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This is a patch of common thyme spreading by self seeding in the driveway. This patch has hissop, lavender, oregano and sage mixed in also by self seeding.

Bees are attracted in hoards to the rich flowering. Butterflies too. And when our neighbor drives by he leaves a wonderful fragrance.

Time to harvest for drying for winter use. I try to cut sprigs just before flowering.

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Creeping thyme flowing over the rockery.

This variety (Thymus sarpyllum) can be used in medicine and cooking along with the common thyme (T. vulgaris) which we also have growing semi-wild in many places in the garden.

One of our favorite uses for the fresh or dried leaves is to brew a very tasty tea. Not only is it tasty but also has health related activity. Check out thymol in Wikipedia.