01 May 2011

april showers bring may flowers

Or in my backyard-less case, a fire escape herb garden.  A quick trip to Jungle, down on Kent Avenue, and I came home with my very own instant oasis.  If you have a yard, or a fire escape, you should definitely check this place out.  The first time I stumbled upon the sweet little spot, hidden amongst seemingly vacant warehouses, I felt just like little Mary Lennox in my very own urban secret garden.  They had everything I was looking for and then some.

Unfortunately, the beautiful weather we enjoyed all day has turned into a pretty chilly evening.  Now all my sprouts are clumped into the corner, filling my kitchen with decadent aromas.  I can't wait until these little guys start growing and I can incorporate them into my recipes!  It's amazing how much flavor fresh herbs add to a meal.  My mouth is watering already.

Here's how my garden grows:

Mint to mash up and put in ice cubes.  I love adding mint cubes to iced tea and lemonade.  I also plan on buying the ice cream maker attachment for the KitchenAid and I'm sure the mint will be put to good use with that little gadget!  Also, mojitos.

Cilantro for Mexican Mondays, Taco Tuesdays, and the day I finally get myself a food processor and start making my own salsa.  I also plan on learning to make guacamole this summer.  Can you believe an avocado fiend like myself has never done that?  Crazy!

Basil for everything!  Homemade pasta, pizza, sandwiches with prosciutto, mozzarella di bufala and olive oil, pesto, you name it.  The plant is a tiny little baby right now but it's already super sweet and fragrant.

Italian Parsley.  This stuff a universal herb and chopped up, I add it to everything.  Really, everything.

Rosemary for chicken salad, skewers, lamb burgers, and to add a little bit of savory to quite a few of my sweets.  It's really lovely if you let a little sprig settle in a pot of sugar and then add it to tea or sugar cookies.  Try it, you'll thank me.

I still plan on picking up some dill, thyme and lavender but alas, I'm out of pretty pots.  I guess my thumb is green enough for now.  Happy May!

I definitely have a little sunburn on the back of my neck and legs from wandering around and being outside all day.  It's almost as if I had actually been working in a garden this afternoon instead of potting herbs in my kitchen at 7:30PM.  Though I keep getting awful chills and the collar of my sweater is painfully rubbing my kooky farmer tan, I'm happy about this.  It means that the weather has truly broken and winter is behind us!  Hooray for May Day sunburns!  I'd jump for joy if I wasn't so terrified of the pain I might induce by peeling my reddened legs off the vinyl kitchen chair.


  1. oooh I love the mint ice cube idea!

  2. try it with all of your herbs... it's also a great way to store them once summer is over!