All of us at Patricia Catering and Cocktails love Spring. It means good weather is coming, trees are budding, and gardeners are getting their indoor gardens ready for the last frost to pass. When Spring comes we love to get our hands dirty and start our herbs in fresh potting soil with organic non GMO seeds. Fresh herbs are key ingredients in our mouth watering foods, appetizers, and refreshing drinks. The sweet basil we grow is used in our signature Layered Herb Cheese and Pesto Torte. Fresh herbs can make a dish go from good to spectacular!
Some herbs that we start indoors include Summer Savory, Marjoram, Cilantro, Italian Parsley, Curly Parsley, and lemon grass. There are even edible flowers like Marigolds in out plant pots that we use to garnish our display! Our perennial plants that reseed themselves and come back every year are Mint, Dill, and Thyme.
Some advice from our Sous Chef is, “Don’t over water your plants and keep pinching back blossoms to encourage a bigger harvest.” And a few words from our very own Patricia, “My best advice is to experiment with new flavors to enhance your own dishes.” Wise words Patricia, we couldn’t have said it better ourselves!
Check out our next blog for a recipe using our very own herbs!
When talking with our fellow peers, most of them are surprised that you can make your own salad dressing and that it doesn’t have to come from a store bought bottle. Vinaigrette is the most common dressing and starts with these two items as a base: Oil and Vinegar. If your new in a kitchen, the word emulsify can seem a little too scientific. Have no fear! All it means is to bring two ingredients together that normally wouldn’t mix. When whisking the the oil into the vinegar causes them to emulsify. When done gradually, they will combine what doesn’t mix. In an emulsified dressing the oil and vinegar doesn’t separate after it has been mixed.
You can use any vinegar, though White Vinegar and Balsamic Vinegar are most commonly used in kitchens. For your oil; a simple vegetable oil will have less flavor and color, olive oil has more flavor and a slightly darker color, extra virgin olive oil-which is a higher quality oil-has a more bold flavor and darker color.
Tools you will need is a bowl, whisk, and any additional herbs/seasonings you wish to add. Generally the ratio for this dressing is 3:1 oil to vinegar, but feel free to adjust to your tastes.
Start with your vinegar in a bowl, gradually add the oil in very small amounts, and whisk. For those of you that are more advanced, whisk while pouring a thin stream of oil into your vinegar. The vinaigrette should thicken as you gradually add the oil. Then feel free to add fresh herbs, garlic, and other seasonings.
Count it as a success and show off your new skill as you present them with a dressing that’s fresh and homemade!
Cheers! Anna and the Crew at Patricia Catering and Cocktails
We are excited to share previous events and happenings here at Patricia Catering and Cocktails! Click here to see pictures, stories, tips, and more!
Patricia Catering is excited about the launch of our new site. One of our new features is tips, notes and recipes from our chef.
Through our blog, we will share with you the small tricks we’ve learned in the profession and some of our favorite recipes, for you to try at home.
We would love to hear your comments and suggestions, and would be more than willing to answer your top kitchen questions. Follow us to find out more!