Weekend Herb Blogging was started as a joke when I didn't have a cat or a dog to participate in Weekend Cat Blogging or Weekend Dog Blogging. Now the event has expanded to include people all around the world who share about interesting herbs, plants, veggies or flowers. There's a new icon which comes in two sizes for participants to use as they wish, designed by Rand. I've realized that people should be able to do herb blogging any time, and only the Recap needs to happen on the weekend. The possibilities are limitless! If you're a food blogger and would like to participate sometime, you can get more details at the Weekend Herb Blogging Archives. Now, let's see what our herb bloggers are talking about this week.
Just in case you might have thought I was kidding about "around the world" this week we're not only adding two new countries, but a new herb blogger from a new continent. Grace, from the blog The Kitchen Journal, is our first herb blogger from Africa! Grace shares a great recipe for Grilled Fish with Roasted Pepper Salad, and has a wonderful photo showing how to roast a red pepper right on your gas stove burner.
Pille, from the blog Nami Nami, enlightened us about Chakhohbili, or Georgian Chicken with Herbs and Wine. Pille says that for some reason, talk on the news of bird flu has only deepened her desire for chicken (forbidden love?). Her wonderful chicken dish uses cilantro (coriander leaf), tarragon, basil, dill, and parsley, which Pille tells us can be replaced by a Georgian spicy relish called adjika.
A spectacular post was produced this week by Stephanie from Mana Makan - The Feast Crusade. (I wasn't the only one who thought so, since the post was also featured in Global Voices.) Stephanie wrote about lotus root, as a follow-up to her earlier WHB post about lotus seeds, but she also talks about Astralagus root (aka Huang QI) and red dates and combines them in a very interesting recipe for Sea Bass Soup with Lotus Root and Red Dates. There are great photos and hints about the medicinal properties of the plants mentioned.
Up in Toronto, Ruth from Once Upon a Feast was having a weekend that seemed at first to be not very herb friendly. Luckily Ruth found inspiration inthe form of a pepper squash and produced a wonderful dish called Spicy Spinach Stuffed Squash. Besides squash, the dish also contained spinach, cilantro, garlic, and ginger, so it certainly turned out to be herb (blogging) friendly in the end.
Forest Falls, California, United States
All you never knew about shallots was the topic for Cyndi of Cookin' With Cyndi. I was surprised at what I didn't know. Cyndi reports about different sizes, shapes, and colors of shallots. (Confess - did you know that?) She also tells about the origins of shallots, and why they are sometimes (incorrectly) called scallions. Cyndi reports that Chicken Marsala and Poppy Seed Dressing are two recipes she likes which contain shallots.
New York City, New York, United States
Another new herb blogger was The Chocolate Lady from In Mol Araan, a delightful blog written in Yiddish and English. She produced a fascinating post about Stormy Pinkness, or the bleeding heart radish. When you see the photo of this vegetable you'll agree it's one of the more unusual ones we've ever had on Weekend Herb Blogging. TCL cut the radish in julienne strips and combined it with kohlrabi to make a very interesting sounding salad.
Andhra Pradesh, India
From the Blog Sailu's Food, Sailu tells us about Amaranth Leaves. Amaranth is also called Chinese Spinach, choy, tamri bhaji, chauli, thota kura, mullikirai Jacob's Coat, and Joseph's Coat. Sailu points out that Amaranth is both a grain and a vegetable and reports that in India it is considered a multi-purpose plant. The amaranth grain is very high in protein, and the tender shoots and more mature leaves are sources of many nutrients. Sailu shares a recipe for a stir-fry lentil dish called Thota Kura-Pesarapappu which sounds wonderful.
Pistoia, Tuscany, Italy
Guests were coming for lunch at the home of Ilva, who writes the wonderful blog Lucullian Delights, and she still found time for a little herb blogging! Ilva had purchased a coconut (a sentimental purchase because her father always bought coconut for the holidays.) She is not particularly fond of coconut, but reports that it was very delicious in her Coconut and Ricotta Cake. It did look delicious too, maybe worth the trouble of hacking open the coconut.
New York City, New York, United States
Peas were the vegetable being used most often recently in the kitchen of Paz from the Cooking Adventures of Chef Paz. Paz shares three great recipes to make with peas, all found on food blogs. Peas Pilaf or Matar Pula was my favorite, but Matar Masala (Green Peas Masala) and Beef Caldereta also look delish. Head over to visit Paz to get the recipes and see where she found them.
Another new part of the world, Central America, was represented by the multi-talented Chef Melissa from Cooking Diva. Melissa talks about something new to me, an aromatic herb called culantro. (I confessed to Melissa that I always thought it was just a different spelling of cilantro.) This herb, also known as recao, long coriander, ngo-gai, spiritweed, black benny, recao de monte, false coriander, and Mexican coriander is used in Latin American and Asian cooking. Melissa shares a recipe for Arroz con Frijoles Negros y Chimichurri de Culantro or Black Beans and Rice with Culantro Chimichuri which sounds and looks wonderful.
Santa Venetia, California
Cookiecrumb (from I'm Mad and I Eat), has been faithfully Herb Blogging for quite a few weeks now. Long enough that we have gotten to be on a first name basis with her dog (Beansprout) and nicknamed him the Herb Blogging Dog. Now CC says she may be running out of herbs, although she found some lovely cut and dried herbs in one of her mom's lovely watercolors for this week. (No pressure. Just stop by when you can CC.)
Salt Lake City, Utah,
Barley was the plant that got my culinary juices flowing this weekend, with a recipe for Barley with Dried and Fresh Mushrooms, adapted from my current favorite cookbook, The Best Recipes in the World. I've also got a great recipe for Turkey Barley Soup that I'll share with you sometime soon. Now, I've been working on this for far too long. Next week is parent teacher conferences, which means long nights three days in a row, so I must get myself ready to face the week.