Just as no meal can taste better than a home-cooked one, no home-cooked meal tastes better than one where you grew some of the ingredients yourself. A small herb garden in your kitchen is a wonderful way to add color to the room and flavor to your favorite seafood bisque recipe. It is always rewarding to know that you have grown the herbs yourself, and it will enhance every dish you cook. Different herbs work for different dishes or styles of cooking, but in this article we will focus on the herbs that are best for seafood – though they certainly can be used for anything else as well. In addition to the varieties discussed here, you should arm yourself with some easy seafood recipes and see what herbs they call for, and add to your garden as you wish.
Anyone can keep a small garden in their kitchen, as long the plants get some natural light. With an indoor garden you don’t need to worry about pests or temperature changes, and the bright green hues and intoxicating scents will be a welcome addition to your household. If possible, choose a windowsill that doesn’t receive too much direct sunlight. Use fresh soil from your local garden store, and water your plants every second or third day. You can start these herbs from seed, or buy starter plants from a nursery. For your essential home seafood herb garden, we recommend rosemary, thyme, and parsley. Other tasty additions could include chives, cilantro, basil, and sage.
Thyme is a common ingredient in seafood recipes. It goes well in just about any soup or stew, and blends well with other herbs. If your recipe calls for dried thyme, you should double or triple the amount called for when using fresh thyme. The most common and standard variety is English thyme, but Lemon thyme is a particularly nice complement to seafood.
Rosemary has a strong flavor, but used fresh this taste cooks down more subtly than it does in dry form. A simple and winning dish is to grill a salmon filet with just rosemary, lemon, and a bit of salt and pepper. The simplicity of the recipe belies the wonderful complexity of mouth-watering flavors that results. Rosemary is also a nice addition to a seafood bisque recipe, even where the recipe doesn’t call for it, because it pairs so well with potatoes.
Parsley has a pleasant freshness that parallels the freshness of seafood. Try grilling salmon on a cedar plank, with the salmon placed on a bed of parsley. Take a seafood bisque recipe, and just before you serve it, chop up a handful of leaves and scatter them over the top for a striking (and tasty) presentation.
A home herb garden is a satisfying way to lend personal flare to your cooking. Get inspired with some easy seafood recipes, and plant the seeds that may become part of your next meal!