Chatelaine Kitchen

The best thing Claire cooked this week: Salsa verde

For three straight nights this week our food director, Claire Tansey, has snipped fresh herbs from her garden and turned them into a very basic salsa verde.

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I finally got around to planting a proper herb garden last week. Well, in my tiny downtown yard it’s actually a series of mismatched pots strewn over the table. Still, I’m so happy to be growing fresh food.

As a fairly frugal shopper I’m always reluctant to buy a big bunch of herbs, which then have a 50 percent chance of going wilty and black in my refrigerator crisper. But I adore the punch and lift that herbs bring to any dish, so having ten different pots of herbs that I can pick a sprig or two from is the perfect solution.

For three straight nights this week I’ve wandered outside and collected a little of this and a little of that and turned it into a very basic salsa verde. I just mash a teeny tiny bit of fresh garlic in a mortar and pestle, then roughly mash in chopped herbs,  salt, a squeeze of lemon or vinegar and a few glugs of olive oil. Amazing!

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We’ve had it on leftover salmon, boiled potatoes, in a green salad and – my favourite – on sliced, grilled striploin steak. It’s ridiculous how much flavour this simple sauce adds to…just about anything!

I’ve been using sprigs of basil, tarragon, mint, parsley, cilantro, thyme and chives, but almost any combination will work.

P.S. Adding anchovies and capers only makes it better.

How are you using fresh herbs this summer? Let us know in the comment section below. 

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