Rosemary is one of the more popular shrubby herbs, with its narrow evergreen leaves and bright blue flowers that bloom from April to June.
It is used to flavor sweets like jellies and jams as well as being soaked for a tea. Breads and meats also benefit from its use, and the flowers can be sprinkled onto salads.
Traditionally, rosemary was thought to ward off evil spirits, and anyone that has ever passed by a rosemary bush and inhaled its wonderful fragrance can attest to its head clearing effect.
When grilling, add some rosemary twigs with the charcoal. Your barbecue will get an unforgettable flavor and aroma.
How to identify rosemary
Rosemary is a shrub with thick woody branches; it can grow quite big. The leaves are silver-green in color and have a strong aroma. Rosemary has small light purple flowers.
How to use and store
Rosemary is essential for roasted meat of fish, but also ideal when grilling, baking in parcels or inside a crust of salt. Just rosemary with salt and pepper is enough, nevertheless finely chopped together with parsley, sage or thyme is an ingredient in innumerable stuffing or marinade mixes.
How to grow
Plant in the spring in a dry, well-drained area, where there is full sun and sheltered from the wind. It’s best to allow this plant to sprawl naturally, no need to prune it.
Cooking with rosemary
Rosemary has a piquant, very distinctive taste. Try rosemary bread, you will feel instantly transported to the Mediterranean Sea just by having a slice. It is just one of the recipes with rosemary.
Rosemary baked potatoes
2 lb baking potatoes, washed
2-3 rosemary sprigs, leaves only
1/2 cup olive oil
Salt and pepper
Preheat oven to 375°F (190°C). Cut potatoes into equal size wedges and lay them in a baking tray. Season with salt, pepper and the fresh rosemary leaves. Drizzle with the oil and shake the tray to help spreading it. Bake for 35-40 minutes.
Rub your steaks with fresh, chopped rosemary leaves. You will achieve an effect very much like that of a steak au poivre, but you will not need any other seasoning than the rosemary leaves.
Sprinkle finely chopped rosemary on grilled bacon or ham.Mix finely chopped rosemary and marjoram with breadcrumbs before using them to bread chicken tenders or your favorite cutlets.
Fresh rosemary adds a stronger flavor than the dried one cannot match and it is relatively easy to find in the shops.
Look for fragrant sprigs with bright colored leaves – a sign of freshness. The sprigs will keep in the refrigerator for 4-5 days, loosely wrapped in a damp cloth or paper towel and sealed in a plastic bag.
Wash before use and pat dry with paper towel. Snip the leaves and sprinkle them over food, add a whole sprig if you only want the flavor and plan to remove the herb before serving.
Try to use larger rosemary sprigs as skewers for your next grill up. They will work with softer food, such as marinated fish chunks.
English - rosemary.
French - romarin.
German - rosmarin
Italian - rosmarino
Spanish - romero.