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Versatile herbs

Versatile herbs are used in a variety of ways. Most gardeners in Chicago want to use their gardens to benefit them. They want a place to relax and watch their garden grow. They desire colorful flowers to lift their spirits. They choose to grow fresh vegetables because homegrown vegetables taste better, are free of excessive chemicals and save money. They like herbs in their garden because herbs from a kitchen garden are more flavorful, can be used in a variety of ways and improve or maintain health.

Fresh vegetables
Photo by Clemens Bilan/Getty Images

Grow these 17 versatile herbs to enhance food. Basil, burnet, chervil, chives, cilantro, coriander, dill, fennel, marjoram, mint, oregano, parsley, rosemary, sage, savory, tarragon and thyme meet the requirements of flexibility, flavor and popularity.

For teas, select mint, thyme and/or rosemary. Use basil, chives, dill, parsley, oregano or burnet in salads. In soups, try combinations of basil, chives, dill, fennel, parsley, tarragon, thyme, marjoram, burnet and/or chervil. Chives, dill or parsley make potatoes special. Dill is the necessary ingredient in dill pickles and cucumber sandwiches. Add flavor to sauces with basil, chives, mint, parsley, marjoram or savory. Vegetables taste better with parsley, chives, thyme or chervil.

Flavor poultry with basil, dill, parsley, sage, thyme, oregano, chervil or savory. Lamb and lamb dishes are enhanced with basil, mint, parsley, sage, thyme, or rosemary. Pork flavored with coriander, fennel, parsley, thyme or sage is delicious. Use basil, chives, coriander, parsley and/or thyme for beef and veal. Fish is improved by adding chives, dill, thyme, oregano or chervil. Game improves with oregano or savory. Eggs and egg dishes are more flavorful with basil, chives, dill, parsley, sage, tarragon, thyme or burnet.

There are seventeen multipurpose herbs that benefit every household. Growing these herbs in your Chicago garden will provide the most benefit to you.

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