Spices out of the Garden

Spices in pots in the kitchen
Spices in pots in the kitchen

 Spices can be grown in the house or if you are ambitious you can grow them outside and supply the neighborhood with all of the spices they will ever need.  That is what my neighbors do.  They concentrate on oregano, sweet basil and sage.

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Oregano plant with just enough of the purple flower left to see.Oregano that has gone to seedBrushing the seed onto a dishOregano seeds that have been harvested and ready to store
Oregano plant with just enough of the purple flower left to see.
Oregano plant with just enough of the purple flower left to see.
Oregano that has gone to seed
Oregano that has gone to seed
Brushing the seed onto a dish
Brushing the seed onto a dish
Oregano seeds that have been harvested and ready to store
Oregano seeds that have been harvested and ready to store

Oregano

In the photos above you can see the oregano bush that starts out green and the tops flower into beautiful little purple bunches.

Once the flower has bloomed it turns brown and dries up producing the seeds.  These bunches of seed may be clipped off the bush.

Once clipped you rub the seeds out of the plant onto a dish.  These seeds are then ready to be put into containers for use in your favorite recipes.

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sweet basil plantsbasil rinsed and ready for dryingbasil that is laid out in paper towels to drybasil being rolled up in paper towel to dry
sweet basil plants
sweet basil plants
basil rinsed and ready for drying
basil rinsed and ready for drying
basil that is laid out in paper towels to dry
basil that is laid out in paper towels to dry
basil being rolled up in paper towel to dry
basil being rolled up in paper towel to dry

Sweet Basil

Sweet Basil is a staple for Nunny's Italian recipes.  Shown above on the vine, the basil is then cut and the leaves are rinsed.

The rinsed leaves are then laid out on paper towels and rolled up to dry.  After a couple of days I place a heavy book on the paper towel.  When the towel is totally dry and not moist to the feel, you can take out your leaves and crush them.

Another way to use your sweet basil is to chop some fresh into your recipes.

Sage

The above pictured plant is a sage plant. When you need sage in your recipe, you can either cut is fresh and dice it or dry the leaves for future use.

Sage is a plant that is very hearty to grow and can grow up to three feet. It is one I suggest you keep in your kitchen growing pots and use as needed.

You can dry it similar to the technique used for the sweet basil by laying out on paper towels and pressing them with a book until the towel is completely dry before crushing.

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