Tuesday, August 3, 2010

When Life Gives You Herb Blossoms...

.... make herb blossom water. Sounds delicious, doesn't it? No. It sounds like nothing. But an infusion of basil and mint blossoms is ethereal, cooling, and a good way to use up part of the plant that you're supposed to remove anyway.

They say that pinching the blossoms from herbs makes the plant redirect it's energy into producing more of what you want: fat, juicy, aromatic leaves. I've never tested an unpinched herb plant against a pinched one, so I can't speak from experience about the effect on your harvest, but going out and removing the blossoms every few days gives you a fun little job that makes you feel like what you do in the grand scheme of things is important: I pinch the flowers off of the basil plants, therefore I am.

But what to do with those decapitated blossoms? Keep basil flowers in your pocket and they'll make your keys smell nice, but they'll turn black. Keep them in a pitcher (or glass) of cold water and their oils will wend their way about the water molecules, imparting a fresh and slightly sweet taste to the drink.

Another interesting test would be this cold brew versus a hot steep. My guess is that, as in cold-brewed coffee, this eliminates any trace of bitterness. Unless you're a pollinator.

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