How To Become An Herbin’ Legend

parsley cilantro

I love fresh herbs and l admit, without remorse, I despise the dried herbs in a jar.  I have always been pretty confident in my knowledge of growing and harvesting herbs until a situation occurred in my life last week.  My sister, whom I consider a better cook and more knowledgeable about plants than myself, came over for dinner.  We decided on grilled steak with chimichurri sauce. Chimichurri is condiment crack for me.  It’s a staple in Argentinean cuisine.  We both had a recipe and I knew I had plenty of cilantro and parsley growing on my front porch.  When I gave her the scissors to get the herbs I had an anxiety attack!  Should you cut or pinch cilantro?  Will the parsley come back if it’s cut?  Where should the cut be made?  As I watched my sister take ALL of the cilantro and the parsley I had another question:  If I don’t use it all, what are my options?

To find the answers, I went “old school”.  I Googled it.  Pinterest and YouTube would probably give me the info but the distractions would be too many for my brain.  The search for answers led me to discover some terrifically informative blogs, certainly not limited to these topics!

Cilantro is a hardy herb but does not like extreme heat. It will bolt (flower and go to seed) quickly in the summer months if not used.  However, its leaves and stems can be cut, washed and placed in the freezer in storage bags. Great to know because I love to use fresh cilantro in turkey chili over the winter months.  These tips and more came from The Herb Gardener.

I discovered that parsley should be harvested by cutting the plant from the outside stems first and at the base, which will promote regrowth.  Once cut, like most herbs, place unused parsley in a water-filled glass and it will last for weeks!  Parsley information was learned on the Our Herb Garden blog.

How was our dinner?  Well…my sister used cayenne pepper instead of red pepper flakes in the chimichurri, so I threw the chimichurri in the freezer and as soon as my parsley has regrown, I will add more so my tongue won’t catch on fire!  Despite the faux-pas, I highly recommend this recipe for chimichurri, which isn’t limited to steak!  Find the link to the recipe on our “Summer is delicious!” Pinterest board.

steak and chimichurri

There’s still time to grow your own fresh herbs this summer!  Just come see us at the Corner Market at Cox Farms!