I grew up in North-West Italy, in the Pre-Alps area, in a tiny hamlet that is practically situated in the woods.
I have always been used to going outside and seeing trees everywhere, snow-capped mountains in the cold months and green and golden in the warm months, hearing birds sing, the humming of the torrent, the sweet smell of the freshest mountain air…
I have also been used having all sorts of herbs growing within a few steps from our doorstep: mint, sage, rosemary, (other herbs that might not even have a name in English or that I just don’t know how to call) and parsley.
My mum asked me to get some herbs while she was cooking so many times! I probably felt a bit lazy then, but I feel so lucky to have grown up in the middle of nature!
When I saw parsley in a supermarket the other day, I thought: “Parsley in a bag? If I were at home I could just go down the stone steps and get some fresh wildly and casually growing organic parsley!” -The supermarket parsley was from Italy too!
I felt a bit silly buying parsley in a packet, but as it was reduced to clear I thought if I bought it I would save it from potentially being thrown away so I gave in and got it 🙂
Fresh herbs may seem a bit expensive to me (as I’m used to just picking them from outside) but they really do give a delicious aroma and flavour, so I guess it’s worth buying them or – even better – growing them yourself.
Parsley not only tastes and smells delicious and fresh but it also has anticancer properties and diuretic effects.
I used it to give a fresh flavour to my sweet potato mash. Sweet potato is a great vegetable for its numerous nutritional values, it contains vitamins, fibre, calcium, iron…this is a super food!
Sweet Potato and Parsley Mash
- 1 Large sweet potato will be enough for 2 people as a side dish or for one if you want it as a meal;
- Fresh Parsley, lightly chopped (it doesn’t work as well with dry parsley but use it if you can’t get fresh parsley);
- Freshly crushed salt and pepper;
- Cinnamon (optional).
-Peel and cut the potato in small chunks (they will cook quicker and use up less energy);
-Chop up some fresh parsley – it will smell fantastic;
-Cook in water until easily pierced with a knife/fork;
-With a fork, whip up and smooth the potato until it’s creamed: add the parsley, seasoning and cinnamon to taste.
I also used some parsley for my work lunch with cous cous, sun-dried tomatoes and diced pepper, it was really fresh and lovely!
Do you buy / use fresh herbs?
Which fresh herbs are your favourite?