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Herb

Guide www.yourlocalfruitshop.com.au Use the calendar at the bottom of each item to check seasonal availability. Green squares signify peak availability and grey squares signify general availability.

Banana leaf

Basil

Basil – Thai

Bay leaf

Betel leaf

Gives a subtle sweet flavour and aroma to food that is wrapped and cooked in them. Helps keep juices in when cooking, and can also be used for serving.

Great for pesto, pizza, pasta and tomato dishes, and partners well with white fish, feta cheese and olives.

A slightly spicy flavour that works well in green and red curries and other South-East Asian dishes such as chicken, pork and seafood.

Most commonly used in Mediterranean cuisines, the aromatic leaves are added to pasta sauces. Remove leaves before serving or use as a garnish.

Popular in Thai and Vietnamese cuisines, the leaf can be eaten raw or cooked. Use in stir-fries, rice dishes, as a wrapping, a garnish, or top the leaf with something delicious.

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Celery leaf

Chervil

Chicory

Chives

Chives – Garlic

Usually only the stalks are eaten as a vegetable, but the leaves can also be used to add flavour to soups or stews.

Use to season poultry, seafood, vegetables, omelettes, soups and sauces. More delicate than parsley and good for mild-flavoured dishes.

Mildly bitter taste which can be reduced by grilling or broiling. Adds colour and zest to salads.

A delicate onion flavour and great for appetisers, cream soups, eggs, potatoes, garnish and salads.

A more garlicky flavour than the common chive. Try stir-frying, sprinkling on soup or pairing with eggs.

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Coriander

Goes with South-East Asian foods such as curries and chutneys. Also use in Mexican dishes, especially salsa, avocado and salads. J F M A M J J A S O N D

Lemongrass

Curry leaf

Dill

Galangal

Kaffir lime leaf

Most commonly used in Indian dishes. Add to a slow-cooked curry, chutney or infuse in olive oil.

Partners well with salmon, cream cheese, eggs, cucumbers and chicken. Use as a topping for creamy soups, or mix with butter as a topping for boiled potatoes.

The root is most commonly used in Thai, Indonesian and Malaysian cooking. Add to curries and soups, either in chunks or cut into slices.

Try adding a whole leaf when cooking jasmine rice, or shred and add to a laksa or curry at the end of cooking.

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Marjoram

Mint

Mint – Vietnamese

Oregano

Widely used in Asian cuisine, this unique flavour can be added to marinades, stir-fries, salads, curry pastes and cold drinks.

Sweeter and more delicate than oregano, it can be used in larger amounts without overpowering a dish. Pair with lamb, vegetables, tomato-based dishes and stuffings.

Classic uses include mint sauce with roast lamb and to flavour beverages, but also include with desserts, soups and salads for a refreshing taste.

With a slight peppery taste, it’s delicious in salads and great with meat and fish.

A staple in Greek and Italian dishes, but also very versatile. Sprinkle on salads, pizza or slip into pasta sauces. Use it with meats, fish, cheese, eggs, soups and vegetables.

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Pandan leaf

Parsley

Parsley – Flat Leaf

Sage

Rosemary

Widely used in Southeast Asian cooking, its sweet aroma works well in rice dishes, cakes and beverages. Can also use leaves to wrap savoury foods, such as chicken or sticky rice.

The decorative ruffled leaves make it a popular garnish, and it goes well with egg and potato dishes, pasta, salads, seafood and sauces.

More robust flavour than the curlyleafed variety, and more commonly used in Italian cooking. Add to potatoes, fish dishes, stews, pesto, and pasta salads.

Pairs well with roast lamb, garlic and olive oil. A nice addition to bread, tomato sauce, pizza, pork dishes and a good steak. Because of its strong flavour, add sparingly.

With a savoury, slightly peppery flavour, it is favoured in stuffings to accompany a roast chicken or turkey. Good with fish, meats, poultry, salads, sausages and soups.

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Spearmint

Sorrel

Tarragon – French

Thyme

Thyme – Lemon

A sweeter milder flavour than peppermint. Adds a refreshing cool flavour to cooking, and can be used in tea, ice cream and salads.

A sharp sour taste when eaten raw. Puree and add to soups, stews, sauces or add leaves straight to a salad.

A staple seasoning in French cooking, with a slight aniseed flavour, particularly suitable for chicken, fish and egg dishes, and the essential ingredient in a Bearnaise sauce.

With a sweet earthy taste, it pairs well with many other herbs. Use in stews, stuffings, marinades, omelettes or scrambled eggs.

Softer than regular thyme with a subtle lemon flavour. Try with roast potatoes, mushrooms, seafood or chicken.

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The chart features some of the herbs available to fruit shops from the Brisbane Produce Market in Queensland. The availability of these herbs is based on traditional seasons but this information is subject to weather and growing conditions. Herbs can be available at other times but the months indicated are the best availability times and the best value buying.


Edible flowers

Zucchini

Nasturtium

Question: What differentiates a herb from a vegetable?

Answer: Can be stuffed with cheese, battered, fried, or eaten raw. They are highly perishable so ask your local fruit shop if they can stock them for something special.

With a slightly peppery taste, all parts of the plant can be eaten. Works well in ornamental salads, in stir-fries or simply as a garnish.

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Herbs are used in small amounts and provide flavour rather than substance to food.

Storing your fresh herbs

Cooking tip

Rinse herbs under cool water, shake off any excess water and pat dry with a paper towel. Cut off the base of the stems and remove any discoloured or wilted leaves. Stand in a glass of water, cover with an overturned plastic bag and seal with a rubber band. Store in the refrigerator for up to five days.

Fine leaf herbs such as basil, tarragon, chives, chervil and parsley should be added to cooking at the last moment as too much heat can destroy the flavour. More robust herbs such as thyme and rosemary can take more prolonged cooking.

Treat basil the same way except store at room temperature and out of direct sunlight. Alternatively, wash and roll herbs lengthways in a slightly damp paper towel. Then place in a zip lock plastic bag and store in the refrigerator.

Recipes

For more recipes, visit www.yourlocalfruitshop.com.au

Herb Pesto 2 Tbsp finely chopped fresh chives 1 cups mixed fresh herbs (such as basil, oregano and flat-leaf parsley leaves) cup pine nuts, toasted 2 garlic cloves, chopped cup grated parmesan cheese ½ cup olive oil 1 pinch salt and freshly ground pepper to taste DIRECTIONS 1. Combine chives, herbs, pine nuts, garlic and parmesan cheese in a food processor and blend together. 2. Add oil in a slow, steady stream and process until smooth. 3. Season to taste with salt and pepper and stir to combine.

Herby Tabbouleh Greek Style Baked Lemon Chicken with Roasted Vegetables SERVES 4 1.2kg of chicken legs or 12 chicken legs

1 cup couscous 2 cups fresh flat-leaf parsley, finely chopped 1 cup celery leaves, finely chopped ½ cup mint leaves, finely chopped ¼ cup chives, finely chopped 8 cherry tomatoes, halved 1 cucumber, seeds removed, peeled and diced ½ red capsicum, seeds removed, peeled and diced

1 Tbsp fresh rosemary, chopped

½ yellow capsicum, seeds removed, peeled and diced

1 Tbsp fresh oregano

1 lemon, rind finely grated and ¼ cup juice

2 cloves garlic

¼ cup olive oil

1 Tbsp of parsley

Salt and pepper to taste

Salt and pepper

DIRECTIONS

2 Tbsp lemon juice

1. Bring 1½ cups water to the boil, then remove from heat and add to couscous. Cover and allow to stand for 5 minutes until water is absorbed. Fluff couscous with a fork.

1 Tbsp of olive oil 1 lemon cut into eight wedges FOR THE ROAST VEGETABLES: 1 large red capsicum, seeded and cut into 4cm pieces 400g pumpkin, peeled and seeded and cut into 5cm chunks 2 brown onions, peeled and cut into 8 wedges

2. Combine herbs, tomatoes, cucumber, capsicum and lemon rind with couscous. 3. Whisk together lemon juice, olive oil, salt and pepper in a bowl. Add to salad and toss until combined.

Salt and pepper

Herby Chicken and Vegie Balls

1 tablespoon fresh picked thyme

MAKES 24 BALLS

DIRECTIONS

500g lean chicken mince

1. Preheat the oven to 200°C.

1 medium-sized zucchini, grated

2. Using a sharp knife make a couple of incisions into the chicken legs and place into a baking dish.

½ small brown onion, grated

3. Blend or chop together all the herbs and the garlic and mix this with the lemon juice, olive oil and salt and pepper. Pour this over the chicken and rub it into the incisions. Take a wedge of the lemon and push it into one of the incisions in the chicken and place back in the baking dish. Bake the legs for 40 minutes.

3 Tbsp chopped fresh basil or chives or a mixture of both

4 roma tomatoes, cut into wedges 2 cloves garlic, minced 1 Tbsp olive oil

1 Tbsp tomato paste or tomato sauce

1 egg 1 cup fresh wholemeal or wholegrain breadcrumbs DIRECTIONS

4. Prepare the vegetables onto a baking tray and drizzle over the olive oil combined with the minced garlic, season with salt and pepper and roast for 30 minutes.

1. Combine all the ingredients and mix using your hands or a large spoon. Using slightly moistened hands, form the mixture into 24 meatballs and place them on a plate. Cover and set aside in the refrigerator until ready to cook.

5. Garnish the vegetables with the fresh thyme when they come out of the oven.

2. Preheat the oven to 200°C. Brush a non-stick baking tray lightly with oil, using a pastry brush.

Recipe supplied courtesy of Brisbane Produce Market chef ambassador Dominique Rizzo and her Putia Pure Food Kitchen.

3. Spread the meatballs out on the prepared tray. Bake in the preheated oven until cooked through and nicely browned, about 20 minutes. If not using at once, store in an airtight container in the refrigerator.

Your Local Fruit Shop Herb Guide  
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