Winter can be a difficult time for me to eat my fresh leafy greens. Green leafy goodness abound in my veggie patch at the moment. I have been looking different ways to enjoy those gorgeous greens.
Rocket and Mint Pesto
I usually eat rocket in salads, or have it finely chopped and mix it with pasta. At the moment, there is a load of rocket in my patch. The problem is, my salad eating phase – which came back recently – has disappeared again! What to do with all that rocket?
I love free food magazines from Coles and Woolies. Browsing through recipes books is my happy place. It was while browsing through a Coles magazine that I came across a recipe for Mint and Almond Pesto – with a cup of rocket as one of the ingredients. So, I figured it can be called Rocket and Mint Pesto! Thanks Coles magazine for the inspiration.
1 cup mint leaves
1 cup coarsely chopped rocket leaves
1/3 cup toasted silvered almonds
1/4 cup finely grated parmesan
2 garlic cloves
1 tbs lemon juice
1/3 cup (80mls) olive oil
Blitz all ingredients till you get finely chopped and blended together.
You now have yummy pesto that can be stirred through pasta. You may also add it on top of salmon, or roasted veggies- yum-yum!
PS I added an extra squeeze of lemon juice because I like lemon zing. I found with only 1 tablespoon of juice, it didn’t give me that zing.
I found picking mint leaves off the stem very therapeutic – I spent 10 minutes picking away to get my 1 cup of leaves. Enjoy the moment!
Looking for more ideas to enjoy your rocket? Then check out Uses for Excess Rocket.
Mint and Lemon Balm Tea
Fresh herbs in a teapot of hot water is the easiest way to enjoy a cup of herbal tea.
I love the taste of lemon balm, and I have loads of mint growing next to the lemon balm. I decided to combine the two and it became my afternoon tea of choice. A refreshing pick-me-up to get me through the arvo! Which is funny because when I researched the benefits of lemon balm, it actually is calming and induces sleep. Meanwhile, mint is known to have a stimulating effect.
Maybe mint has the stronger super power in the lemon balm/mint combination!
Add a large handful of mint and a large handful of lemon balm to a teapot. Pour boiling water in and let steep for five minutes. You can add honey to this if you need some sweetness.
Pour into your favourite tea cup and enjoy!
My eldest girl had exams recently. A friend of mine told me that she used to drink rosemary tea or small a rosemary sprig before studying, or exams to help with memory retention and recall.
As Kiarah was stressing a bit about her exams, I did suggest Rosemary tea and she gave it a crack while studying, and before her exams. She put a sprig of rosemary in a teacup, as well as some rosemary leaves in a tea infuser. She then poured boiling water into the tea cup. Kiarah prefers sweetness in her tea, so a touch of honey was added.
The beauty about using fresh herbs for making tea is that you can try new combinations. You can also change the strength or flavour by adding more of one herb. Sometimes, I feel like having my tea more minty so I add more mint.
Kale and beetroot salad
I recently snuck out of the office and had lunch with my girls. We went to an awesome cafe that is an extension of my favourite fruit and veg shop, Farmer and Sun. I had a delicious Kale, Beetroot and Wild Rice Salad. I felt healthier just seeing it it front of me!
There is beetroot and kale in my garden, so I was inspired by my cafe lunch, and made it at home.
Into a shallow baking dish add cubed beetroot with some crushed garlic. I like garlic so added four cloves! Drizzle olive oil and mix through.
Cover the dish with foil. Bake at 180 degrees for an hour.
Take the beetroot out of the dish and pop it into another bowl.
Chop some kale into small pieces. (With kale I only use the leafy part and give the stems to my guinea pigs. I find that the stem can be tough.)
Put this kale into the dish that you just had the beetroot in. Drizzle some olive oil, sprinkle with salt. Mix through. Bake this at 180 degrees for 10 minutes. You might might to check it after 8 minutes – but 10 minutes is perfect in my oven. But kale can burn really easily – I have done this before! You want the kale crispy but not blackened.
Assemble your salad! I finely chopped some coriander, parsley and mizuna that I also had growing in the garden and mixed this through my salad. A touch of balsamic vinegar and crumbled goats cheese on top and my salad was done. It was delicious.
Now over to you, what are some ways that you like to enjoy your fresh garden goodies in Winter? We would love to hear them! Please share in the comments below.