Review: Recipes From the Herbalist's Kitchen
Over the past several years I’ve spent more and more time learning about the benefits of plants and herbs and how they can be used as part of a whole foods diet, and more specifically how they can address common ailments. It is that curiosity that led me to Brittany’s book, Recipes from the Herbalist’s Kitchen.
More than just a cookbook, this beautiful guide starts off by educating you about the different herbs and their constituents. This appeals to my inner student who wants to understand why we do something, not just how. I think this also gives you the ability to gain confidence with using these herbs outside of recipes, such as when you might need something bitter, or something sweet and knowing which herbs will give you those flavors.
When the book moves into sharing recipes, they are organized by season. I personally feel that we need to pay more attention to the seasons and what nature provides to us during each one. There is a reason we get greens in the spring, and sweet potatoes in the fall, however in the world of year round tomatoes and strawberries at the grocery store we’ve lost touch with seasonal eating. Brittany brings us back to that thought process by sharing recipes which incorporate seasonal vegetables and herbs so that we may use what is in abundance at the time in our own gardens or at the farmer’s market.
And speaking of recipes, you don’t want to miss the one for fish chowder. It’s a great way to use seasonal fresh corn in combination with the fresh caught fish from your trip to the lake. Nourishing and light, it may change your mind about eating soup in warmer weather.
The quality of this book does not surprise me at all. Storey Publishing is known for their beautiful books, with fantastic photography and topics which focus around crafting, food and self-sufficiency.
If you are wanting to incorporate more fresh herbs into your menus, this is a wonderful guide, written by a knowledgeable Western Massachusetts resident. Brittany lives in Conway, and runs Thyme Herbal where she offers both online and classroom training. You may also recognize her as a presenter at Kripalu.