Herbs add distinctive scent and flavor to all kinds of dishes:
Carolyn Story found lavender buds and wheat berries used in the following recipes at the Good Earth Market.
Lemon Herb Sugar Cookies
From Carolyn Story
1 cup butter, unsalted, softened
1 cup sugar
2 egg yolks
3 tsp. lemon zest
1 tsp. rosemary*
2-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp. baking soda
1/4 tsp. salt
Cream butter and sugar until fluffy. Add yolks and beat until blended. Add lemon zest and rosemary.
Sift dry ingredients together and add. Beat until well-mixed.
Measure out dough in 1 to 2 tbsp. balls. A small #60 or #30 ice cream scoop also can be used.
Roll each dough ball in a mixture of sugar and zest and place on baking pan. Press with a glass that has been dipped in sugar.
Bake at 350 degrees for 8 to 12 minutes, depending on size and number of cookies on pan.
Story uses dried rosemary and crushes it in a mortar and pestle. She also makes a lavender-flavored cookie by substituting 2 to 3 tsp. of crushed dried lavender buds for the rosemary and lemon zest.
This recipe was adapted from a recipe, Provençal Wheat Berry Salad with Smoked Turkey, published in "Food and Wine Annual 2004" (American Express Publishing, Corp.). The recipe also can be found at the magazine's Web site, www.foodandwine.com.
Wheat Berry Salad with Smoked Turkey
From Carolyn Story
Prep time: active 20 minutes; total 1 hour, 10 minutes
2 cups (14 oz.) hard red wheat berries
2/3 cup low-fat yogurt
1/4 cup Champagne or white wine vinegar
2 tbsp. Dijon mustard
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 serrano chile, seeded and minced
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
6 oz. smoked turkey, diced
1 pint grape tomatoes, halved
1/3 cup oil-cured olives, pitted and coarsely chopped
1/4 cup coarsely chopped basil
2 tbsp. finely chopped mint
In large saucepan, cover wheat berries with 3 inches of cold water and bring to a boil. Simmer over moderate heat until tender, 1 hour. Drain and rinse under cold water. Drain and let cool.
Place yogurt in a bowl; whisk in vinegar, mustard, garlic, and chile. Whisk in oil and season with salt and pepper. Add turkey, tomatoes, olives, basil, mint and wheat berries and toss. Season salad with salt and pepper and serve.
The salad can be refrigerated overnight. Bring to room temperature before serving.
Basil Lemonade From Kate Rossetto
Any type of basil may be used for this recipe, but colored and scented varieties lend extra personality, Rossetto writes in her cookbook "Herbs from the Garden to the Kitchen." Dark purple basils tint the lemonade pink, but have a milder flavor than green varieties. Lemon-basil adds a lemon-drop essence. Cinnamon and Thai basils contribute spicy overtones.
Makes about 4 servings
1/2 cup lightly packed fresh basil
3 tbsp. sugar
4 cups water
1/2 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
Combine basil and sugar in 1-1/2 to 2-quart glass bowl. With the back of a wooden spoon, crush basil leaves with sugar until thoroughly bruised. Add water and lemon juice.
Stir until the sugar is dissolved. Taste and add more sugar if needed. Pout into ice-filled glasses. Garnish with sprigs of fresh basil.
Lemon Balm & Chive Butter From Kate Rossetto
Tightly covered, this butter will keep for a week in the refrigerator and up to two months in the freezer. It's good with most steamed or blanched vegetables and poached or grilled fish. Use only fresh herbs.
1/2 cup unsalted butter
2 tbsp. minced lemon balm
1 tbsp. minced parsley
1 tbsp. snipped chives
Soften butter and combine with the minced herbs. Salt to taste, cover and chill overnight to let flavors blend.
Herb-flavored vinegars From Kate Rossetto
Rossetto prefers starting with white or red wine vinegars because of their mild flavor.
Chive blossoms give white-wine vinegar an oniony flavor and a pink color.
In another version, she puts fresh marjoram or thyme in white wine vinegar in a bottle and adds black pepper corns and the yellow part of a lemon peel, peeled in a spiral.
Flavored vinegars are a tasty complement to chicken. After sautéing chicken, remove the meat and deglaze the cooking pan with vinegar and pour over chicken.
Here is Rossetto's method to make herbed vinegars:
Wash and dry fresh herbs. Bruise slightly. Fill small bottle halfway with herbs. Cover with vinegar. Place in sunny window or on an outside deck for a couple of days to allow flavors to infuse vinegar. Strain and rebottle with a sprig or two of fresh herbs.