Like many during lockdown, my home gradually began filling up with flower pots and green leaves of all shapes and sizes.
After all, if we weren’t able to freely explore nature out of our homes, then we were going to bring a bit of it inside!
There was an unspoken agreement between my partner and I that she would tend to those plants in the following rooms: lounge, bedroom, study, bathroom, and front porch.
Leaving me with: the kitchen.
To be fair, my ‘gardening CV’ would simply state that I managed to do the unthinkable, and kill a couple of cacti. So it was probably for the best that I took a back seat…
Still, I had that one room. And true to form, I took to thinking how I could save a bit of money.
When it comes to cooking, often fresh herbs are included in the list of ingredients. And previously, I had been spending the best part of a pound on packets from the supermarket each and every time.
You’d be right if you guessed that didn’t sit well with me. Especially because we only tend to use a small portion of the supermarket-bought pack, and when the next recipe comes along that requires that same herb, the leaves have browned or started to turn soggy…
I’m not good with food that’s gone off. And I’m not good with essentially throwing money away.
So we bought a range of living herbs for the kitchen, and you better believe that keeping them alive became my pet project! At any hour of the day, you’d find me tending to the thyme, caressing the coriander, murmuring to the mint…
Luckily for all concerned, they didn’t go the way of the cactus, and I was able to start snipping a stem off each plant any time I needed to add some flavour to my dinner.
I haven’t bought a packet of herbs from the supermarket since!
Another green-fingered tip to save money:
If you don’t have the time or space to grow your own herbs, and rely on those supermarket packs, then once you’ve trimmed off what you need for your recipe, carry on picking the rest of the leaves, put these into an ice cube tray, fill it with water (or oil/melted butter) and pop it in the freezer. Now, the next time you need herbs for a recipe, simply melt one of these into your pan!