Saturday, November 26, 2011

A Fair Garden

After a day of cooking Thanksgiving dinner, Ann blurted out to me in the way that only she can, "I don't want to ever live in another house without a garden where I can pick fresh parsley, sage, rosemary and thyme!" I found it amusing that the lyrics to Scarborough Fair are so ingrained in our culture that they always come out in this same order.

“Are you going to Scarborough Fair?
Parsley, sage, rosemary, and thyme
Remember me to one who lives there
She once was a true love of mine.”

This litany of herbs dates to the 19th century and although nobody knows for certain when this idea originated, it is very likely medieval or older. I am struck by the fact that although Ann is relatively new to fresh herbs from the garden, that she has come to value most highly four herbs that have been valued highly for centuries in Western civilizations.

I might add chives to this list, but certainly the canonical four herbs are the four that we use most out of our own garden. And they were certainly the first four herbs in the ground when we established our garden some two seasons ago. And fear not, my love, they will always be in our garden for we cannot cook without them. Fresh herbs are the sine qua non of all good cooking.

Thus from our fair garden even in this chilly season I give you:


  1. We must NOT forget Basil, being the Italian that I am......And Thai Bail too, for those lovely, delectable Summer Rolls!!!

  2. Thatsa a really good photo of sage. But alas I have much more thyme then you :P


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