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Saturday, October 12, 2013

A Special Request!

Dear Folks,

I have a special request, and hope you can also pass this on to others.

Lucy is my grand-niece, a sweet natured child with a serious challenge.  Her parents have been through all the 'have you tried this' options and are now turning to a fund-raiser to get and maintain medical equipment and supplies.

Please consider donating a few dollars or more if you can spare it.

And please pass this on to others who may be able to help.

In addition to Lucy's needs her parents also want to try, through medical options for Lucy, to help other families who are faced with the same life-changing challenges.

Thank you from my family.

-- Catherine, The Herb Lady

Thursday, October 10, 2013

Herb Soup

Dear Folks,

With the weather getting a little cooler I'm in a soup / stew mood.

  This is adapted from a recipe from the Provence area of France.  Originally in my book "101+ Recipes From The Herb Lady"

        A wonderful blend of herbs, lettuces, croutons and cheese. The greatest of this soup, besides its fabulous flavor, is the ability to vary the herbs, lettuces, croutons and cheeses for different flavors. I developed this recipe from Provencal soups.

You can certainly use broth instead of water but I urge you to try the water version first.  The flavor of the herbs and greens creates the most incredible flavor.

1    shallot, finely chopped          
2    tablespoons butter, unsalted
4    cups mixed fresh herbs, finely chopped (I used Thai basil, cilantro, parsley, see note below*)
1    package spring lettuce mix (4 cups)
1    teaspoon coarse salt
1/8    teaspoon black pepper
6    cups boiling water (can use broth - but try the water the first time)
6    cups croutons (any stale bread diced will work too - some day-old nice artisinal breads would be great for this)
3/4    cups Parmesan cheese
        Set aside 1/2 cup each of herbs and lettuces for garnish. Divide croutons and cheese into 6 soup bowls.
        Saute shallot in butter for 1 minute. Add herbs, salt, and lettuces all at once and cook—stirring for 5 minutes. Add boiling water, cover and simmer for 15 minutes—stirring occasionally. Ladle greens and broth into soup bowls. Add garnish of herbs and lettuces to each bowl. Serve and enjoy. Serves 6.
        *Traditional recipes call for sorrel and chervil or any combination you like - the Thai Basil has a tarragon aspect to it which mimic the chervil with a kick and cilantro's citrus back-note mimic the sorrel.

Here is another type similar using farmers market sourced ingredients which I put together after seeing a recipe on Better Homes and Gardens and seeing all the great greens at the farmers market and what my garden was giving me.

Green Harvest Soup

-- Catherine, The Herb Lady

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