Wednesday, December 16, 2015

Organizing My Herbal Garden

My sketch of my Herbal Garden on my Sketch Journal

Lately, I've been working on organizing my herbal garden on my window sill in my kitchen right next to my drawing table. It's looking pretty good, I admit. I have about 9 herbs here, organized based on how much water they need in terms of frequency.  
On the left are Chives, Peppermint, and Mint, which requires plenty of water.  The next three are Sage, Rosemary, and Oregano. Generally, the rule seems to be that they just need well-drained soil but can be watered regularly.  Right section is Tarragon, Parsley, and Basil which requires less water as long as the soil is damp.  

The herbs plants themsleves are fairly cheap.  They are usually around $3-$4 each, sold at Trader Joes, Sprouts, Whole Foods, and other organic markets.  
For the cool wooden boxes seen here, I got them from the Japanese market Daiso, which has a lot of cheap but cool items.  These wooden boxes were around $1.50 each.  A great deal. They are in the organizing boxes section where they have trinket containers and tiny drawers.
Generally, I keep the boxes there to keep the plants secure, organized, and not let too much water get on the windowsill. 

I keep my herbal garden on my window to let the sunlight in. I
also do sketches here when I have time to sketch things.

My herbal garden. I separate them based on how they are watered.
On the left are Chives, Peppermint, and Mint, which requires plenty
of water compared to the 
other herbs. In the middle are Sage, Rosemary,
and Oregano, 
which generally need well-drained soil.  In my right are
Tarragon, Parsley, and Basil, which just needs damp soil and less water. 

Eating my morning cereal.  I don't put herbs in the cereal. Maybe on tea.

I've noticed that seasoning herbs they sell in stores are dried, crushed, and condensed.  As a result, they can be more flavorful given their small amounts.  Technically, you don't really need fresh herbs if you're mostly using it to flavor your food.  I suppose one can say the same about non-organic and organic food in general when it comes to general flavor. I kind of like it fresh and somewhat more earthy, I guess.

For cooking, I find that Chives and Basil have been my favorite. Chives taste like grassy green onions. Basil, of course, has a flavor all its own. Mint is good, too. I could only think about using it for just tea at the moment.  If I ever decide to have Pho at home, I can see it being used.  For breakfast, I tend to sprinkle some of these herbs to go with my eggs. I admit I tend to use onions a lot, which tend to overpower things a bit.  The herb flavors are more subtle.

Breakfast with fresh basil and chives. 
Herbs go fairly well with meat.

Lately, I've been watching Anthony Bourdain's food traveling shows on Netflix like The Layover and Parts Unknown.  I love how food and culture mix together.  It reminds me I need to travel more again. Perhaps I'll make some plans soon.  And bring my trusty Sketch Journal.

Off topic, I found out I won second place for the New Matter Christmas Ornament Contest!  Pretty sweet!  So I got a $25 Starbucks gift card.  Will be taking some coworkers out for coffee soon to celebrate.  I'll post the 3D print of the ornament once the New Matter people print it out.

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