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HERBS & SPICES, Culinary, Medical, Other


HERBS & SPICES, Culinary, Medical, Other

This Group is intended for those BLF Members, Experienced and Beginner Gardeners, who have an interest in growing Herbs & Spices. Be it for Culinary, Medical or Other Uses.

You may have a special way you grow your Herbs that you would like to share or a Recipe for a Lotion or Crème that you have made for your aches and pains. You may grow some of the many trees that are grown for their seeds, flowers, bark or leaves and would like to share your experiences in growing these. Or you may be new to this form of gardening and have many questions to ask. 

Members: 22
Latest Activity: Jul 26

Discussion Forum

10 Herbs you may not be using yet

Started by Dianne Caswell. Last reply by Christa Mar 17, 2020. 8 Replies

This is an interesting article written by Alys Fowler for The Guardian, USA. I have taken out the references to overseas suppliers of plants and seeds. Please bear in mind that this is an article…Continue

Tags: Houttuynia, cordata, Sweet, bergamot, Par-cel

Chillies, Capsicums and Tomatoes and a Recipe for Sweet Peppers Stuffed with Fetta

Started by Dianne Caswell. Last reply by Dianne Caswell Jan 19, 2020. 3 Replies

It is now a great time to plant most Chillies, Capsicums and Tomatoes. As these are the mainstay of a lot of our recipes, used in many of our Culinary Treats, Preserves, Sauses, Salads, Curries,…Continue

Tags: Cream, Cheese, Fetta, Preserved, Capsicums

Seasons in which to plant our Herbs and more

Started by Dianne Caswell. Last reply by Christa Mar 26, 2019. 3 Replies

Whether you grow your herbs in Pots or In the Ground, I hope you find this little list helpful to you. I grow most of my Herbs in a Semi Shaded position in Summer as I have found our Sun is very hard…Continue

Tags: Autumn, Spring, Hints, Winter, Summer

Spice is nice: cinnamon and turmeric with cocoa and oats.

Started by Dave Riley. Last reply by Dave Riley Apr 10, 2017. 12 Replies

I'm no chocolate aficionado, but this time of year, late at night, I loves me cocoa.I use 100% cocoa which has a gorgeous warm red mahogany color and I blend that with some of the turmeric paste I…Continue

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Comment by Dianne Caswell on February 23, 2021 at 16:59

Just a little titbit of info - If you ever see a Plant with a Botanical Name which includes the word “officinalis”, officinalis comes from Latin indicating it's use by medieval healers. many of our Culinary Herbs and other Edible Plants contain the word “officinalis”.

Comment by Christa on March 8, 2018 at 8:15

Try Mudbrick Cottage and look for coltsfoot.

Comment by Dave Riley on March 7, 2018 at 18:39

I don't know the herb but I assume all plant stock carries the problematic  pyrrolizidine alkaloids and it's only processing that removes the toxicity. Indeed  maybe no part  the plant should be ingested without it being specially treated first.

However you can import the seeds: LINK --assuming Customs will approve them.

Comment by Becky on March 7, 2018 at 10:21


Would anyone know where I can get a cutting of Butterbur herb, free of pyrrolizidine alkaloids.



Comment by Dave Riley on August 3, 2016 at 11:21

FYI (as I have come across) if fermentation is your thing:

Any quantity of leaves, in 120gm bunches

1⁄4 teaspoon  sea salt per bunch  

Ferment 7-10 days before refrigerating.

Or you can do that and blend up the leaves. You can also add garlic.

For a Thai edge:

Any quantity of Thai basil leaves, in 120gm bunches

2 cloves garlic per bunch
1 tablespoon grated galangal root (or grated

fresh ginger) per bunch
1⁄2 teaspoon fish sauce per bunch (thus the salt)

Comment by Dianne Caswell on May 14, 2016 at 16:06

Now is the time to take the opportunity of what Sweet Basil you may have still growing in the garden. Unless you have a very lucky and have yours growing in a very warm spot it will start to go off. Here are 4 ways I tide myself over with Sweet Basil over Winter.

Sweet Basil - Preserved in Olive Oil - Tuck as many Basil leaves into a sterilized preserving jar as you can comfortably fit in, (an optional extra would be to add some Garlic Cloves and Herbs and Spices.) Pour the oil over the leaves, tapping the jar on a board (that you have put a tea towel onto) this will get rid of any excess air in jar. Then pour enough oil over the leaves to just overflowing. Screw on the lid firmly and wipe clean, label and store in fridge or very cool dark spot. 

Sweet Basil – Olive Oil – To make Sweet Basil Olive Oil you will need Basil Leaves, Olive Oil, (optional Garlic Cloves or other Herbs and Spices), you will also need clean, dry sterilized bottles with clip lids. Work out how many bottles of Oil you want to make and that will be the amount of Oil you will need. You will need a Pyrex Jug or the like to do the first step. Put about ½ a cup of Basil Leaves to every 500mls of Oil in jug (with extras if using). Heat your Oil in a stainless steel pan but do not boil. Pour Oil over leaves (with plastic wrap over jug) place in a bright room and allow too steep for a couple of days. Strain into bottles and put a few clean dry leave in the bottles. Seal, Label and wait a couple of weeks before using.

Sweet Basil – Frozen – Place clean dry Basil Leaves single layer on baking trays you have lined with greaseproof paper. When frozen these may then be put into containers or crushed and used as you need to in Pasta, Soups, and Casseroles etc. Freeze dried Basil has much more flavour than store bought dried Basil. Label.

Sweet Basil - Pesto - This Pesto in made in a Blender

100gms Fresh Basil Leaves, ½ cup Olive Oil, 30gms Pinenuts, 2 Garlic Cloves Crushed, Salt, 60gms Parmesan Cheese

Put Basil, Olive Oil, Pinenuts, Garlic Cloves and Salt into Blender. Stop once or twice to scrape down sides. When well blended put into a bowl and stir grated cheese in by hand.

Put into Sterilized jars and pour a little Olive Oil over the top to stop oxidization. If using as a stir through for Pasta add ½ a cup of Pasta Water to Pesto. Enjoy!!!

Comment by Dianne Caswell on April 28, 2016 at 6:56

Here's a recipe for a Garlic and Herb Seasoning Mix . If you don't have all the ingredients but have them growing in the garden you can pick them and grow them and then grind.

If you have to buy the Onion & Garlic Powder, it will pay to read the label to make sure it doesn't have MSG in it. I buy all my Spices from Herbie's Online so I know they are pure.

Garlic & Herb Seasoning Mix

2 tablespoons Marjoram
2 tablespoons Oregano
2 tablespoons Rosemary
2 tablespoons Basil
2 tablespoons Parsley Flakes
1 tablespoon Onion Powder
1 tablespoon Thyme
1 tablespoon Salt (Sea or Himalayan)
2 teaspoons Garlic Powder
1 teaspoon Black Pepper (ground the way you like it)

Combine all ingredients and seal in jar.

Comment by Lissa on April 28, 2016 at 5:24

Yep I do. A small one.

Comment by Dianne Caswell on April 27, 2016 at 17:58

Hi Lissa, Do you have a Mortar and Pestle to grind the spices.

Comment by Lissa on April 27, 2016 at 5:28

Dry, Dianne.


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