Get down and dirty in the garden
Patsy Bell Hobson is blogging at Patsybell.com. When not in the garden or on the road, find her in southeast Missouri, USA. Read more travel stories at Striped Pot and find more garden, travel and random rants on her Facebook.
This spring I am growing 'Fancy French' chervil (Anthriscus cerefolium). I've never grown it or even cooked with it except in my fines herbes mixes. Have you ever tasted it? You may have already tasted it in Bernaise sauce.
Although this herb is not often used in American kitchens, it is popular in French cooking. Often referred to as gourmet's parsley, chervil is known as cicely and sweet cicely. I've noticed that Bobby Flay uses chervil in some of his TV recipes, like this French Style Grilled Potato Salad .
Chervil is in the same family as parsley and dill. Like these plants, chervil has a long tap root and is not easily transplanted. Keep that in mind as you transplant delicate seedlings, or sow it directly in the garden.
Introduce your palate to chervil this spring.
Photo by andreasbalzer/Courtesy Flickr
Chervil is a lovely, lacy leafed plant. Like cilantro, chervil grows best in spring. It is quick to bolt in hot weather. Sow seed in two-week cycles throughout the spring to extend its growing season.
Later this summer, I'll let you know about my success growing chervil. I'm looking forward to using it in my cooking. I grow something new every year, this year it is chervil. Join me!
According to Chervil, by Linda Gilbert, chervil has a natural affinity for spring time foods such as salmon, trout, young asparagus, new potatoes, baby green beans, carrots and salads of spring greens.
If you grow chervil, let me know how it did in your garden. Find chervil in garden seed catalogs. I bought mine at Renee's Garden.
Seed Packet Giveaway
Renee's Garden has agreed to give away a seed packet of chervil to three lucky Herb Companion readers. Read more to learn how to enter in this exciting giveaway. Read Renee's blog to order more seeds and discover more great how-tos and gardening tips.
HOW TO ENTER
• Post a comment telling us how you would like to use chervil in your home.
End date: May 1, 2011 (12:00 a.m. Central Time) UPDATE: Time's up!
And the winners are ...
Mari Miller in Chicago, Illinois: "I have allergies to wheat and dairy and thought I'd never be able to eat French food again. Recently, I found a vegan French potato recipe online and have not been able to stop making it. I'm so eager to try and adapt other French recipes. Chervil would be a great addition to my garden and help me further my culinary adventures."
Jingle in Pawtucket, Rhode Island: "I love growing herbs on my kitchen window and the spare room window is full of new sprouts. If I grew cervil I would definatly try it as a light topping to baked cod or salmon with lemon. I have some dry cervil, but have never had it fresh. Thanks for the contest!"
Kay Wolter in Grandville, Michigan: "I have never used it before but it would look great with what else I grow"