French Friday and Herbs:
How to make a simple Bouquet Garni
An absolute classic seasoning and essential in the kitchen, these little bouquet garni are so easy to make and make wonderful gifts for foodie friends, as well as being a must for the herb and seasoning jar in the pantry. They look so pretty when displayed in a clear jar, but attractive tins and earthenware containers would also be perfect. You can keep them tied in little bundles if the herbs are fresh, or tie them in individual cheesecloth bags if the herbs are dry. No quantities have been given for the herbs – use whatever you have available…….although the recipe I am sharing today has a twist of lemon peel added, making it suitable for all fish and seafood dishes.
There is no definitive recipe for these little bundles of herbs, but the following herbs are usually used when making them: Thyme, Bay Leaves and Sage. Other herbs can also be added, based on what recipe it is you are planning to add the bouquet garni too, such as: Savory, Rosemary, Lovage, Parsley, Tarragon, Dill, Chives, Chervil, Basil, Salad Burnet…….vegetables can also be added such as celery stalks, shallots and onion. I have shared my “generic” recipe below today, but the bouquet garni that are shown in these photos were made for a seafood recipe and are made up of: parsley, celery leaves, dill weed, chives, bay leaves and a twist or two of lemon peel.
Bouquet Garni Recipe:
Fresh sprigs of parsley, or dried
Fresh bay leaves on the stem, or dried
Fresh sprigs of Thyme, or dried
Fresh sprigs of Tarragon, or dried
Raffia or string
Cheesecloth, cut into squares
Tie small bunches of the fresh herbs together with the raffia or string – using double the amount of parsley to the other herbs. Pack them into an airtight jar.
OR, place dried herbs as listed, in the middle of a square of cheesecloth and tie the little bags securely. Place in airtight container. Add label to say:
“ Drop one bunch or bag of bouquet garni into stews, stocks, casseroles and soups to give a subtle herbal flavour”
These make perfect gifts for a Christmas hamper
A bouquet garni is a bundle of herbs that is added to casseroles, stocks, sauces and soups. It traditionally comprises parsley (or parsley stalks, which have lots of flavour), a few sprigs of thyme and a bay leaf. These herbs may be bundled into a strip of leek or a piece of celery stalk, or tied in a muslin bag or with string, to keep them together during cooking and allow easy removal before serving.