End of Summer Herbs

P1210844by Val Easton

By about the third week of August, the sun slants at a different angle, the light changes, and the morning mists linger longer. I love my garden most as the weather cools, plants mellow, and begin their slide into winter. The garden settles into ripeness, no longer aspiring as in springtime. The tomatoes peak, the squash are voluptuous, the pumpkins are starting to color; it’s time for the quieter pleasures of the autumn garden.

Herbs are simple, humble plants that produce all season long. They’re also nutritional powerhouses. I make this versatile Alice Waters’ Salsa Verde recipe most summer weeks, and use the sauce on vegetables, toss it with pasta, dress a potato salad with it, or swirl it into soup. You can use a mix of any green herbs you have in the garden; the taste is fresh and lively.

Val EastonSalsa Verde

Combine in a small bowl:

  • 1/3 cup coarsely chopped herbs, including parsley, mint, basil, rosemary, lemon verbena
  • Grated zest of 1 lemon
  • 1 small garlic clove, chopped very fine or pounded into a puree
  • 1 tablespoon capers, rinsed, drained, and coarsely chopped
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • Fresh-ground black pepper to taste
  • ½ cup olive oil

Mix briskly until the sauce holds together. If you like a smoother sauce, you can use a food processor.

Read more on Val’s blog at http://www.valeaston.com.


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