Summer gardens are overflowing with herbs right now. Even if you don’t have a huge garden space, a few herbs in pots are such a bounty in the kitchen. Soft herbs like cilantro, basil, and dill go to seed easily, and need to be reseeded throughout the summer to have a constant supply. Heartier herbs like oregano, thyme, sage, and rosemary can last the winter (either outside or in pots). Herbs are a great way to add flavor and nutrition to foods, but contain very few calories.
We used herbs in many kids cooking classes last month, including Rethink Your Drink (about sugar in beverages), Pesto Power (defining and making pesto), and Herbal Mania (learning about herbs and making herb-focused recipes). This basil lemonade is lower-sugar than your standard offering, but high in flavor and was a huge hit with kids.
This month’s classes all focus on the bounty of the summer garden.
Broccoli Head Chefs (9-12 year olds)
- Becoming a Pickle – Tuesday, August 14th 2:30-4:30pm
- Garden Scavenger Hunt – Tuesday, August 28th, 2:30-4:30pm
Celery Sous Chefs (5-8 year olds)
- Rainbow Salsa – Thursday, August 9th, 2:30-3:30pm
Pepper Pack (2-4 year olds)
- Tuesday, August 14th and Tuesday, August 28th, 10-11am
Adapted from Vegetable Literacy by Deborah Madison
- approximately ½ cup of fresh basil leaves (regular basil, lemon basil, or Thai basil)
- 12 mint leaves
- 3 tablespoons sugar
- grated zest and juice from 2-3 lemons (½ cup lemon juice)
- 4 cups of water
- ice (crushed & cubes)
Using a muddler or a spoon, muddle the basil & mint leaves with the sugar until the leaves are crushed at the bottom of a pitcher. Add the lemon zest, juice and water. Stir well to combine. Serve over ice (strain if you please).