Bouquet garni is the French word for a garnished bouquet, a classic term for a combination of parsley, thyme, and bay leaf. The bouquet is tied by twine and added to stocks, soups, meat, poultry dishes, sauces, and vegetables.
While fresh herbs are the preferred seasoning ingredients, dried herbs are also an option. The dried herbs are secured in cheesecloth to keep the herbs secured. Other bouquet garni recipes include basil, chervil, rosemary, peppercorn, and tarragon.
The herbs’ combination helps with flavor. Keeping the herbs secure by twine or cheesecloth is for convenience. Loose fresh herbs in a saucepan are great for seasoning and are not easily removed as the sprigs can easily get between the foods they become soggy.
How to store fresh herbs
It is always a delightful experience to cook with fresh herbs. The aroma and flavor of fresh herbs are quite different from dried herbs. Dried herbs are more potent than fresh herbs. The ratio of fresh herbs to dried herbs is 1 tablespoon to 1 teaspoon.
The storing of fresh herbs depends on when you plan on using them. The best way to store fresh herbs that you will be using soon is to:
- remove any brown leaves and clip off the stems’ ends.
- wash them well under running water to remove any traces of dirt that may have attached themselves to the stems and leaves.
- dry thoughrouhly – (do not use a salad spinner, as the leaves may wilted faster) – use either paper towel or lay them on a tray and let air dry. Another way to dry the herbs if to spread them out on a clean dish towel and gently pat them dry.
- Place herbs in a container half filled with water.
- For hardier herbs, clean and dry (follow same instructions as above), wrap in damp paper towel and then plastic wrap and refrigerate.
If you are planning on freezing the herbs, follow the same cleaning and drying instruction, place in a freezer bag, and don’t forget to label the bag.
How to use Bouguet Garni
There are endless ways to use bouquet garni. As this bundle of aromatic herbs adds so much flavor, it is a great way to season stocks and broths.
A Cheesecloth bag or a piece cut out to make a bag tied with twine is also a good way to keep your Bouquet garni secure. There are no particular requirements for making the bouquet. You may add a combination of the following herbs:
- Bay leaf
- Lemon peel
- Orange peel
Stews, braises, slow-cooked meat and chicken, poached fish and seafood, and in the cavity of whole poultry are great ways to use a Bouquet Garci. . If you are interested in freezing the bundle of herbs, use an airtight container. The herbs will be preserved for several weeks.
You may need the following: