Dan here today. As you may remember, Beth and I recently got an Aerogarden. We’ve been harvesting for about a month or so (maybe a little more), so I figured now would be a good time to do a quick herb status report. So, without further ado, here’s my position on the herbs in our garden. I’m ranking them in order of awesomeness, beginning with the least awesome and ending with the most awesome. (Also, I’m watching How I Met Your Mother reruns right now.)
Oregano: I haven’t figured out what to do with this herb. Its flavor seems to get lost every time I try to use it, and I just keep thinking how nice a sage plant would be in its place. Maybe I’m just not using it right, but this is one case where I think the dried herb is better.
Thyme: This one doesn’t seem to be growing all that well, although maybe I just haven’t harvested it frequently enough. Also, the branches have grown together into an elaborate knot, so when I harvest it, I tend to wind up hacking away with the scissors and hoping for the best. It tastes good, though.
Mint: This is probably the biggest plant in the whole garden, and when I’ve used it, it’s been really good. Unfortunately, I haven’t come up with many ways to include it in recipes, so a lot of it is still sitting there. Fortunately, summer is coming soon, and I’ve got a bulgur salad recipe that’s pretty good.
Globe Basil: Tasty, with a nice spicy flavor, and it’s been producing pretty well. Unfortunately, it grows in a bush, which makes harvesting it harder than working with the thyme. Also, I made the mistake of planting it in the center of the garden, so getting access to the back of it is tricky.
Lemon Basil: This is growing really well, and it’s added a great flavor to the rice and beans I’ve been eating a lot of lately. The lemon flavor is too strong for pesto, though, and that makes me sad.
Regular Basil: Delicious. That’s pretty much all I can say. The only reason it’s not in the top spot is that it hasn’t produced that many leaves. Friends with Aerogardens talk about how the basil just explodes. Ours has maybe ten leaves. It’s tall, but most of the plant is just stalk. Is this going to get better in another month? I hope? It’s been nice when it’s available, but there hasn’t been as much of it as I would like.
Dill: I like dill okay, but Beth loves it, and the dill plant has definitely produced the most of any of the herbs. I guess there’s a reason they call it a weed. I’ve put it on top of her eggs, used it in a couple of shrimp recipes, and I even stuffed it in a roast chicken yesterday in place of basil, which turned out pretty well. For now, I am declaring this the winner of the herb competition, although I have to admit that I had hoped the garden would be doing a little bit better by now. Next time, maybe I’ll just make all seven pods basil.