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Seed Spotlight: German Winter Thyme

June 14th, 2010

Easy to grow and dry at home, time-honored thyme is a kitchen staple that adds enormous flavor to a variety of dishes and foods: breads, meats, salads, soups and more. Throughout history, thyme has been used as and for: incense, as a purifier during sacrifices; gifts to knights and warriors, to provide the bearer with courage; embalming; medicinal purposes; an aphrodisiac; and even warding off nightmares. This unassuming herb has been revered for much more than just cooking!

In the kitchen, thyme is used as a basic ingredient and can be found globally, in French, Greek, Indian, Italian, Mediterranean, and Spanish cuisines, just to name a few. It is one of the main elements of Herbes de Provence and the bundle of herbs known as bouquet garni. Whether using whole sprigs for roasting a chicken or the leaves for a flavorful soup, versatile thyme is a must have.

Our hardy German Winter Thyme germinates in 14-21 days and matures in 180-240 days. It offers wonderful flavor and turns from bright green to blue-green as it matures. Use this classic herb fresh or dried.

Bay-Thyme Scalloped Potatoes

  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1 medium onion, finely chopped
  • 3 teaspoons fresh thyme leaves, minced
  • 2 medium garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 ¼ teaspoons salt
  • ½ teaspoon black pepper
  • 5 medium-size russet potatoes, peeled and sliced 1/8-inch thick
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 1 cup low sodium chicken broth
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 4 ounces sharp cheddar cheese (shredded)

Adjust an oven rack in center of oven then preheat oven to 425 degrees F. In a Dutch oven set over medium-high heat, melt butter. When foam subsides, add onion; cook for about 4 minutes, stirring occasionally, until lightly browned and soft. Add thyme, garlic, salt and pepper; stir and cook for 30 seconds. Add potatoes, cream, broth and bay leaves; bring ingredients to a very light boil. Cover Dutch oven, reduce heat to medium-low then simmer for about 10 minutes, until potatoes are just about tender. Discard bay leaves. Transfer ingredients to a buttered 8-inch baking dish. Sprinkle with cheese then bake for about 15 minutes, until cream is bubbling and top is golden brown. Cool 10 minutes before serving.

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