Easy to Grow, Easy to Make - Herbs De Provence

Herbes de Provence, or Proven├žal herbs, is a traditional blend of aromatic herbs that flourish in hills of southern France during the hot summer months. Used by the handful when fresh, Herbes de Provence is also good using dried herbs. Bay leaf, thyme, fennel, rosemary, chervil, oregano, summer savory, tarragon, mint, and marjoram are some of the herbs typically used. Orange zest is sometimes included as is lavender, though the lavender is less traditional and was added more for the benefit of tourists who saw lavender fields as almost emblematic of the Proven├že region. Traditional or not, the addition of lavender is a nice addition to the blend.

Herbes de Provence is a good addition to any dish from the Mediterranean region and is especially good mixed with olive oil to coat chicken, fish, tomatoes or chunks of potato for roasting, adding to a pizza sauce or sprinkled over game or kabobs before roasting. It's also used for seasoning salads, sauces and cheeses, as well as soups and stews. Herbes de Provence is a nice mixture to use for rubbing on meats, poultry, or fish before roasting. Try rubbing the blend on whole turkey or the breast before roasting. Rub beef, lamb or veal with olive oil, season with salt and pepper, then press the herb blend into the meat. Sear the meat in a very hot skillet on both sides, then remove and finish roasting in a 300 degree oven until cooked to your preference. When grilling add a pinch or two of herbes de Provence to the coals when they are hot.

There are several variations on the theme, so choose which one best suits what is growing in your garden!

Recipe #1:

1 tablespoon dried basil

1 tablespoon marjoram

1 tablespoon summer savory

1 tablespoon thyme

1 crushed bay leaf

1 teaspoon lavender

1 teaspoon fennel

Recipe #2

1 tablespoon thyme

1 tablespoon chervil

1 tablespoon rosemary

1 tablespoon summer savory

1 teaspoon lavender

1 teaspoon tarragon

1 teaspoon marjoram

1/2 teaspoon oregano

1/2 teaspoon mint

2 powdered or chopped bay leaves

Simply combine the herbs and store in an airtight container. This mixture should keep for up to 4 months!

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About The Author, Briscoe White
In 1985, Briscoe White opened The Growers Exchange in an abandoned Texaco station on a busy urban street corner in Richmond, Virginia. In 1987, Briscoe opened a nursery in Charles City County, 25 miles east of Richmond along the shores of the historic James River. Currently there are 5 distinct growing environments with 5 acres under cover and it allows him to grow a variety of plants: herbs, perennials, annuals, fresh flowers and produce.

The past twenty years have been spent growing an environment within the store and the community that encouraged an exchange of plant and gardening information. In the summer of 2005, he closed the doors to the local market, and moved onto the Internet. The company is now based at our facility in Charles City, and have been connecting and exchanging with gardeners all over the country. Visit anytime: http://thegrowers-exchange.com/

Briscoe has over 25 years of gardening experience. For further information on gardening products or gardening tips please contact Briscoe White at bwhite@thegrowers-exchange.com