From the Herb Garden

Giulio Sturla about the pleasures of having access to a fantastic herb garden.
By Giulio Sturla

Yesterday I spent the day out of the kitchen and decided to work in the garden. There is always something to do in the garden and this time the mission was to harvest our herb terrace bed. It was an amazing sunny day, the garden with more space for more planting and the amount of plant collected was perfect for the next food preparations that I have in mind.

I wanted to create a piece of unique cured bacon and different to any other one is that right after curing the pork belly the meat is rubbed with the herb mix from the garden, It is so unique that it will never taste the same because I make the mix with the herbs and spices I find the days before curing with any given amount of plant material. Every new batch of curing bacon is announced to our most loyal costumers so they are aware of what is on the way.

The last herb mix that I made was with marjoram, thyme, sage, rosemary, oregano, tarragon and bay leaves, they are dried naturally and hung with the tips pointing down in our herb room.

Since the last year we have being collecting herbs and flowers to prepare our own teas, and always dreaming with having our foraged/garden tea collection, now we have a big variety  so Christy has decided to put them in jars and ready to be brewed. Mint, roses, elderberry, yarrow, basil, nettle, chamomile, lemon verbena, lavender and calendula, they can be tasted as a single or mixed.

Another use for herbs that we have being working for the last two years is distilling, using a copper distiller. This is just great, imagine extracting the essence of the entire plant, essential oils, aromas, components of any plant into a liquid form with a higher concentration. Liquid aroma of bay leaves for a fish dish.

Giulio Sturla

Giulio is a nature and food lover. He has been cooking for the last 12 years. He endeavors for local, honest, delicious food to be shared with everyone. He is now pursuing his dream project in Lyttelton - New Zealand, a community restaurant based on good values and respect for the soil.

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