Friday, August 31, 2012

Homemade Herb Sugars August's Funny Food Blogger Posts

I have what my friend Wendy calls a sink or swim garden. In NYC potted herbs and heirloom tomatoes grow on our terrace and a larger, in ground version is out in the country.

The NYC plants are left to fend for themselves on weekends and the same for the garden in the country during the week.

Planting my herb garden in May

Sink or swim.

Even though I was diligent about watering, feeding and using an organic soap mixture to ward off insects, I was up against record heat waves and often found myself repeatedly bringing wilting plants back to life. 

The same herb garden today

Much to my surprise and my brown thumb, everything has pretty much flourished, especially the herbs at the country house. We now have an abundance of sage, different varieties of mint, tarragon, oregano, basil, dill and rosemary. Weekend guests are almost always sent home with an assortment.

Ok not everything worked. My squash and white eggplants were decimated by vermin.

Different Varieties of Mint
I honestly had no idea what I was doing but it mostly worked out well this season. I  already have lists of ideas for next year.

There's way more bounty than I can cook with. Lots will end up in the freezer. I am contemplating drying some out but I was most excited about making these flavored sugars to bake with. How fancy does it sound for example, sprinkling or baking with spearmint sugar? Faaaaancy. I know.

So I bought a dozen canning jars, a mondo sack of sugar, took a scissor to my garden and went to work.

I used these instructions and filled almost all  of the jars with different varieties of herbs. Now they are just waiting their turn on the shelves to add creative flair to future baking projects. 

Flavored sugars are easy peasy to make. Chop the herbs to release their oil, mix with sugar, pour into the jars and done.

You do have to stir them up every couple of days but after a few weeks the sugar has absorbed the flavor. I wanted to make some pretty labels but didn't get it together in time for this post. The addition of a nice label and a ribbon would make these a perfect gift. I am contemplating doing another round next weekend just for that purpose. Or perhaps this time with salt?

This is a great idea if you have some extra time this Labor Day weekend and an overabundance of herbs.

And if you have more free time, for some fun reading. Here are the food blogger posts that make me laugh this past month:

A Southern Grace's The Streak

Scarletta Bakes' Chihuahua Twice Baked Potatoes

Bake at 350's You're A Peach!

Endless Simmer's The Price of Passion

Bake & Destroy's Subtitle Goes Here

Grub Street's Stick a Fork in 'Em

Cake Wrecks'  How it Might Have Happened

Cake Spy's When Snacks Get Snarky

Leite's Culinaria's When Live Hands You Tornados, Make Blueberry Muffins

Lastly, a reminder I am giving away a copy of Dede Wilson's A Baker's Field Guide to Doughnuts.

Hop on over here to enter. Have a great Labor Day Weekend!


  1. Wow you really do have a green thumb! Your herbs are gorgeous!

    ANd thanks for these post recommendations! I need a few laughs this AM. :)

  2. Faaaancy, indeed! Lora, this is a brilliant idea. I have a wee herb garden at home and could do with making some of that mint sugar in particular - my mint is all over the place. Gee, I know, you're supposed to contain mint since it takes over the asylum but I let them attack all the other plants. Hm. Don't judge. Great gift idea too! Brown thumb? Green fingers you have as well as your many other talents, girl!

  3. Great idea. I've got rosemary and lavender... will give it a go.

  4. Nice work. I am determined to start off a little garden and we are just entering spring here. Hope my effort works out as well as yours.


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