For those of you who are fortunate enough to have a plot of land to call your own, keeping a small herb garden alive and happy might be a normal part of life.
In the city, many of us make do with finding the sunniest window sill and attend to our green young there. These herbs support health in more ways than one – they do what plants do best – keeping the air a little purer and fresher – but also provide extra nutrition and fresh flavors that make the dishes prepared at home delicious.
The Boston area has year-round markets, including the popular and historic Haymarket with affordable produce. If you’re in dire need of a bunch of melons for a party tonight, that might be your best bet. Otherwise, many towns as well have a day or two where local produce growers, cheese farms, flower farms, bakers, coffee stands, meat stands, and much more come together in a town square to sell fresh goods. I like to visit the Copley Square Farmer’s market.
I love the fresh taste of basil, mint, chives. I have been to a few farmer’s markets this summer and also checked out the farmstand at Allandale Farms in Boston which is not far from me. Getting my fresh herbs there instead of the local grocery has proved to result in plants that are hardier and last longer planted at home and also serves the purpose of supporting a local farmer so that they can continue to bring fresh produce and goods to me.
It was great to see so many lively, happy plants on my visit. Allandale Farms surprised me with a wide variety of plants in their greenhouses – some which are designated as shade plants, which I imagine many urban dwellers might be interested in for their friendliness to low lighting.
Their wealth of herbs – including echinacea, lemon verbena, lavender – made the garden smell phenomenal and I came away with a lovely basil and lavender. Lavender is a natural bug repellant, and although it doesn’t do so well indoors, I think it has served well to protect the basil from aphids.
With the basil from my little urban garden, I was inspired to develop this phenomenal recipe for a Basil Cheesecake, Topped with Balsamic Chocolate Drizzle and Sliced Strawberries. It is gluten free and has several better-for-you ingredients which I can’t wait to share with you all in the second post in this short series.
I brought it to a potluck dinner this past Friday and the feedback from people of all ages was excellent! I’ll be bringing you this recipe later this week and I encourage you to look up and visit your local farmer’s market, pick up a little green basil plant, and try it at home. Not only is a basil plant beautiful to look at but you can make this beautiful and tasty dessert, and also savory dishes including bruschetta, mozzarella and tomato salad, or a number of pasta dishes.
Here’s a sneak peak of the Basil Cheesecake, Topped with Balsamic Chocolate Drizzle & Sliced Strawberries, paired with these beautiful 222 Fifth dishes in the Surya Teal design (see the whole set here) – be sure to stop by later this week for the recipe!
In the meantime, I have a special s u r p r i s e for you readers – you can enter to win the gorgeous Surya Teal pattern, a set of 4 222 Fifth dessert/salad plates in a giveaway below!
About the plates: These Surya Teal plates by 222 Fifth are designed in NYC – sophisticated and beautifully designed, they complement the colors of this dessert perfectly. Practically, the square plate design is friendly for cabinet storage – squares are better than circles at not losing space, after all. I love the wavy edges that soften the shape and reflect the painted design on the plate. They’re fine china, but are quite durable – it helps when serving company to have plates that can stand up to many washes and hands handling them – plus they’re microwave and dishwasher safe!
Enjoy! See you back here later this week with the recipe, and have fun with the giveaway. Good luck!
You can keep track of your entries here:
How To Enter
BlueBootsGo x 222 Fifth Giveaway
(September 6-September 13, 2016 at 11:59 pm):
Complete all the steps on Instagram, OR Facebook, OR here on the Blog. You get one entry per step completed. For extra entries, you may enter on a different platform (i.e. if you complete all the Instagram entries but want to enter on Facebook too (or here on the blog) for extra entries, go right ahead!). Participation is limited to US entries only. Don’t forget to check your entries – if you’re the winner, I’ll be reaching out to you using the contact info you provide! All entries will be verified and the winner will be chosen randomly.
- Follow @BlueBootsGo on Instagram.
- Follow @222Fifth on Instagram.
- Like the giveaway post on Instagram with the photo of this dessert.
- Comment with your favorite fresh herbs on that post and use the tag #222FifthxBlueBootsGo
- Like the Where the BlueBoots Go page on Facebook. You can also keep track of your giveaway entries on the Giveaway tab on the left panel.
- Visit the 222 Fifth page on Facebook.
- Comment on the post announcing the giveaway with your favorite fresh herbs and use the tag #222FifthxBlueBootsGo.
On the blog
- Subscribe to the Where the BlueBoots Go blog and never miss a post.
- Visit the 222 Fifth blog – more fun recipes, stories about food, and ideas for making a beautiful tablescape.
- Like this post and Comment with your favorite dish to make when making a meal for others!
I partnered with 222 Fifth to bring you this beautiful set of 4 dessert plates. The opinions and all content of this post are my own. Thank you for supporting the brands that are a part of the BlueBootsGo lifestyle and help bring you more adventures on Where the BlueBoots Go!
Check out what I’m pinning on Pinterest!