Herbes de Provence is an herbal blend that contains a mix of garden herbs, often locally grown or from your own garden. It is used to flavor potatoes, veggies, and even on some meats. The blend has a wide range of flavor tones that are cooling and savory.
Traditional blends of herbes de Provence in France omit lavender, while American versions often include lavender. You can tweak the recipe with or without lavender, to suit your tastes. It is well worth including the lavender in this multi-purpose herb blend. This spice blend has many variations that may include, or omit, different herbs like basil, bay leaves, savory, chervil, sage, oregano, mint, as well as the lavender. The blend goes well with potatoes, other root vegetables, fresh veggies, fish, and poultry. It can be used with red meat, if desired, though it has a lighter flavor than most herb blends for red meat.
Herbes de Provence comes from the South of France, where these summer time garden herbs are fresh and abundant. This herb blend became more well-known in North America after the 1970s, when Julia Child popularized French cuisine through her French cooking school, her television programs, and her award winning cookbooks.
Use the fresh herbs from your garden to make this classic spice blend. Dry them first by bundling them on the stem and hanging them in an airy room, away from heat and light, which will fade their colors and flavor. If desired the herbs can be dried in an electric dehydrator, on the lowest setting, but I find the herbs retain better color when dried at room temperature.
Strip your home grown herbs from their stems after drying. Only the leaves and flowers should go into the spice blend. Save the stems to make fire starters.
Making Herbes De ProvencePrint
A blend of summer garden herbs for that offers delicious flavor for veggies, poultry, and fish. If you have the herbs already dried this spice blend takes only minutes to make.
- Start with the rosemary and fennel, and pulse them in a small spice grinder just to break them up. You don’t want to powder them. Dump into a mixing bowl.
- If using home dried thyme, make sure the leaves are stripped off the stems.
- Measure the thyme, marjoram, tarragon, basil, mint, and lavender into the bowl with the rosemary and fennel.
- Stir the herbs together until blended. Large herb leaves may crumble during mixing, or need to be crumbled to blend together well.
- Store in an airtight jar. Label and date. Use as needed.
If you have the herbs already dried this spice blend takes only minutes to make.
Keywords: Culinary herbs
- 1 tablespoon fennel seeds
- 2 tablespoons dried rosemary
- 4 tablespoons dried thyme
- 3 tablespoons dried marjoram
- 1 tablespoon dried tarragon
- 1 tablespoon dried basil
- 1 teaspoon dried mint
- 1 teaspoon dried culinary lavender
Start with the rosemary and fennel, and pulse them in a small spice grinder. Dump into a mixing bowl.
If using home dried thyme, make sure the leaves are stripped off the stems.
Stir the herbs together until blended. Large herb leaves may crumble during mixing, or need to be crumbled to blend together well.
Store in an airtight jar or airtight container. Label and date. Use as needed.
If you want to shift the flavor of the mixture, you can reduce some of the herbs and increase others. Or add in lavender leaves instead of the blossoms. Or, you can add in parsley, summer savory, or some bay leaves to shift the flavor as well. This blend is quite flexible. Adapt it to your own tastes and the herbs you have available in the garden.
Use herbes de Provence to season meats by sprinkling it over meat before cooking, or massaging it into meats with oil before cooking as normal. The blend works well with chicken, fresh water fish, salmon, and is traditionally used in soup and sauces. It can also be used with turkey, though most traditional turkey flavorings lead more toward sage.
Some recommend adding a few pinches of herbes de Provence to your grill coals while grilling, to help season the meat or veggies through the smoke. This herb mixture could also be added to the pellets of a smoker. It would go very well with some grilled zucchini, grilled corn, a grilled tomato, or baked or grilled summer squash. Blend it with ghee and mop it on kebobs when grilling for some exquisite flavor.
Use Herbes de Provence to season veggies by adding the herb blend to the veggies before cooking, along with olive oil or ghee. For example, an easy oven roasted new potato dish is as follows. The herb mixes can also be used to season vegetable skewers for summer grilling.
Herb Roasted Potatoes:
Wash enough new potatoes to serve 4 to 8 people and place them in an oven-proof, lightly greased casserole dish.
Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with 1 tablespoon of the herbes de provence blend.
Cover the casserole dish.
Bake at 375F until potatoes are tender. Serve hot, with a side of sour cream or plain yogurt, butter, and fresh chopped green onions or chives.
Potatoes may also be roasted in the same pan with a roast chicken. This saves on space, in the oven, and imparts additional delightful flavors into the potatoes.
This blend is formulated without additional salts. I recommend salting food just before serving. While salt does bring out the herb’s flavor, omitting it in the blend itself can help cater to different dietary needs, like low sodium. Less salt is needed for flavor when flavorful herbs are used in cooking.
You can also add pair garlic and onions with this classic blend. However, I prefer to add fresh garlic or fresh onions to the dishes being prepared, rather than adding a dry blend of garlic powder and onion powder. Without onions and garlic, the Herbes de Provence are more adaptable to different dishes.
Enjoy using your fresh and abundant garden herbs to make this flavorful spice blend to enjoy all winter long in casseroles, soups, stews, and roasted meat.
If you’d like to learn more about growing culinary herbs in the garden check out this post.