I love cooking with fresh herbs. Not that my spice cabinet isn’t a hazard to anyone who opens it up and thereby puts themselves in serious danger of being bonked on the head by a bottle of star anise…but there is nothing like a nice big aromatic bunch of the real thing to make any recipe sing. So all through the summer I grow big wooden barrel-fuls of parsley, sage, rosemary and thyme right outside my back door. Along with mint and tarragon and lots and lots of basil. The basil gets its own personal barrel.
And I merrily cook all summer long with the fresh herbs right outside my back door. And then sooner or later comes this.
And not only are my herbs not growing happily in my barrels anymore, I can’t even SEE my barrels. So from about November until late May, there I am paying for outrageously priced limp bunches of herbs in the supermarket. This year, I decided to take matters into my own hands and give myself a birthday present of one of these:
This is an Aerogarden, and this seems like a good place to say that the Aerogarden people have never heard of me or my blog and that I bought and paid for my Aerogarden my own self. So you know that the story you are about to hear is true and unbiased.
The Aerogarden basically works like this: that top part has special lights in it that are on a timer so they know when to come on and off. The bottom part you fill with water and a packet of “nutrient liquid” that comes with your seeds. There are 7 little holes in the center of the Aerogarden, and you pop whatever seed pods you ordered into these little holes. I ordered the herb package. The pods are filled with the seeds and a tiny amount of dirt, all pressed into a little plastic holder. When the pods are in place, all you can see is the label on the top – everything else is in the water, and there is a little pump swirling it all around. This all took me about 10 minutes to set up.
After about 2 weeks, my little herbs were springing up. Here is my 2 week old thyme.
I’d like to say that water bottle is in the shot to give you a sense of perspective as to the size of the thing, but honestly, it’s there because people leave half-full water bottles all over the dang house.
Anyway, I’m an Aerogarden groupie now, and as a result am planning to make something that involves fresh pesto in the middle of February. Just because I can.