Monday, June 16, 2014
One apon thyme . . .
. . . a girl moved into a house without a garden. And a house is not a home, but one way to make a house a home, is to start herb gardening. She went to the farmers market and bought thyme seedlings.
Thyme is a herb with culinary, medicinal and ornamental uses. Thyme is of the genus Thymus.
Ancient Egyptians used thyme for embalming.
The ancient Greeks used it in their baths and burnt it as incense in their temples.
The Romans used it to purify their rooms and to "give an aromatic flavour to cheese and liqueurs".
In the European Middle Ages, the herb was placed beneath pillows to aid sleep and ward off nightmares. Thyme was also used as incense and placed on coffins during funerals, as it was supposed to assure passage into the next life.
Thyme is best cultivated in a hot, sunny location with well-drained soil. Although it is generally planted in the spring, but the girl planted it in winter. And although it can take deep freezes, she put it in-house in a sunny spot.
Thyme is a common component of the bouquet garni (a bundle of herbs tied together with string and mainly used to prepare soup, stock, and various stews) and of herbes de Provence ( a mixture of dried herbs typical of Provence, including savory, marjoram, rosemary, thyme, oregano and, sometimes lavender.
But the girl invited the thyme into the house because of its aroma and attracted appearance. And she uses it in salads . . .
2 tbsp pine nuts
a hand-full of mixed salad leaves
1/2 cup prepared beetroot, in wedges
1 small avocado, in slices
8 cherry tomatoes, halved
1 cup goat cheese with rind, chilled
Sometimes she removed the leaves from stems either by scraping with the back of a knife, or by pulling through the tines of a fork, but more often she just use the leaves on the stem.