Parsley is an herb, hailing from the rock-strewn shores of the Mediterranean. It is often relegated to the garnishing role of a plate, that speckled green scatter of chopped leaves, or a sprig of curly savoury atop the main offering. Such a shame, because the flavour of fresh parsley is divine. It is also a holder of nutrients and history; the ancient Greeks held the plant sacred, and it was renowned for its medicinal properties. There are two main varieties of parsley, curly and flat-leaf. Both are a wonderful addition to the herb garden and kitchen, hardy and vibrant.
Fresh parsley is such a beautiful pop of flavour. I love mixing it through salads, from a few leaves added to young mesclun mix, to using a whole bunch in tabbouleh renditions or super simple summer parsley salad. It is also delicious in cream sauces and a nice addition to dressings. Today though, that parsley bouquet is bound for butter, along with garlic and sea salt, for a wonderful quick addition to melt atop your favourite meal. You're welcome to use any good quality butter, though I highly recommend trying your hand at cultured butter for the fermented goodness and sensational taste (send me a message and I will happily share directions for making your own cultured butter from cream to which you can add herbs, honey or chiles for something special.) Parsley butter can also be made with vegan butter!
1/2 bunch Parsley (about 1/3 cup chopped), leaves nipped from stems and then finely chopped (keep the stems for using to flavour stock or soup!)
100g of high quality Unsalted Butter, at room temperature
1 clove of Garlic, finely minced
1 tablespoon fresh Lemon Juice + Zest
Pinch of Sea Salt
The How To:
Add the finely chopped parsley to softened butter in a medium sized bowl. Whip together with a wooden spoon, working the garlic, lemon and sea salt into the mix. Roll the butter as a log in baking paper or a beeswax wrap. Use as desired, and freeze any extras; just slice with a warm knife when needed. Try atop roast vegetables or proteins, on sourdough toast, melted over hot grains or roasted spuds, with your egg or tofu scramble....
For the remaining parsley in your bunch, try adding some to a thick smoothie (really!), chopping and mixing into a hearty winter tabbouleh salad with oranges, tossing into a batch of savoury spelt scones, make a parsley pesto to stir through pasta, or add to smashed potatoes with a drizzle of hemp seed oil.
Created by Elena Keir of Naked Cakes and Wholefoods