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Growing and Selling Fresh-Cut Herbs
Growing & Selling  
                Fresh-Cut Herbs
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Author Bio Biographical statement from the author of Growing and Selling Fresh Cut Herbs.

Sandie is a speaker
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Learn how to grow
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Growing and Selling
Fresh-Cut Herbs

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care and uses.

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Herb of the Month


 Chenopodium ambrosioides

Family: Chenopodiaceae

Description: 3-5 feet tall and 2 feet wide or more.  Uniquely serrated leaves with strong camphor-like odor; deep red blotches sometimes found on leaves and veins; drooping spikes loaded with tiny round green seed in fall; branching stems form at base, and a thick, trunk-like stem may develop when plant pushes through a barrier;  annual. 

Cultivation: Thrives along stream beds with some afternoon shade, but can adapt to poor, disturbed soil and full sun (which may promote smaller leaves and premature bolting).  Seen along country highways and growing out of cracks in city sidewalks.  Sow seed in fall (germination takes 3-4 weeks); thin to about 12 inches apart.  Readily reseeds self when established; stems root slowly in water.  Fertilizer not necessary, but light applications of compost aid protection against drought.  Hang upside down in a dark, well-ventilated room until the leaves are thoroughly dried.  Grown commercially in Russia.

Culinary Use: The leaves make attractive garnishes and unique flavorings for hearty corn, squash, or bean soups.  Add the dried leaves the last 15 minutes of cooking so that the food will not become bitter and use the fresh herb sparingly, as its flavor must be acquired by most.  Used throughout Southern and Central Mexico.

Spicy Brown Rice with Chipotle and Epazote
3 Tbsp corn oil
1 cup diced mixed red and yellow bell peppers or 1 cup diced red bell pepper
1/3 cup sliced scallions
1 large chipotle en adobo, minced
2 ½  tsp minced epazote leaves
3 cups cooked brown rice
1 cup peeled and diced ripe tomato
¼  tsp toasted and ground cumin seed
            Heat the oil in a large skillet. Sauté the peppers and scallions over medium heat for 5 minutes.  Add the chipotle, epazote, and rice.  Mix well and cook for 1-2 minutes.  Add the tomato and cumin and cook over medium heat, covered, stirring occasionally, for 10 minutes.  Taste for seasoning and serve hot.  (New Southwestern Cooking)

 Pipian Verde
4 oz green unroasted pumpkin seeds (about 1 heaping cup)
½  cup finely chopped white onion
2 Tbsp peanut oil
1 cup rich chicken stock
1½  cups cilantro
2 cloves garlic, roasted and peeled
8 large leaves Romaine lettuce, chopped with no stems
1 bunch watercress
1 bunch radish tops
1¼  cup loosely packed chopped epazote
1 tsp salt
1 tsp sugar
1 Tbsp peanut oil
            Dry roast pumpkin seeds in a sauté pan for about 5 minutes until they have finished popping.  Set aside a few seeds for garnish.  Sauté onion in the oil over low heat until slightly browned.  Process the pumpkin seeds and stock in a blender to form a paste.  Add ½  cup cilantro and the remaining ingredients, except for the oil, and puree.  Add oil to a high-sided pan, and heat until almost smoking.  Refry sauce at a sizzle for 3-4 minutes, stirring continuously; do not overcook or the sauce will lose its greenness.  Return to blender, add the remaining cup of cilantro, and puree together.  Garnish with the reserved pumpkin seeds. Serve at room temperature as an accompaniment for sautéed pork or scallops or tossed with pasta.  (Coyote Café)


The comprehensive revised edition of Growing and Selling Fresh-Cut Herbs is available from author, most internet booksellers, bookstores, and in libraries.  It can be ordered from the distributor, Independent Publishers Group


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