Lovage. An herb and a CRAZY straw!

Yesterday’s CSA contained Lovage, an herb that we don’t use very often. So, here’s a few recipes and general information:

The leaves can be used in salads, or to make soup, and the roots can be eaten as a vegetable or grated for use in salads. Lovage tea can be applied to wounds as an antiseptic, or drunk to stimulate digestion. The seeds can be used as a spice, similar to fennel seeds. In the UK, lovage cordial was traditionally mixed with brandy in the ratio of 2:1 as a winter drink. Lovage is second only to capers in its quercetin content. Quercetin is a bioflavinoid noted for its anti-inflammatory action.

Lovage Butter
4 tablespoons butter
1 tablespoons of minced lovage
½ tablespoon fresh lemon juice
salt & pepper to taste

Lightly heat the butter to melt, stir in the remaining ingredients. Serve over steamed veggies, fish or poultry. Can be cooled and refrigerated to use later.

Lovage & Green Garlic Sauce:
1 cup extra virgin olive oil
1/2 cup lovage, chopped
1/4 cup green garlic, chopped
1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper

Heat the olive oil in a large sauté pan. Season with salt and pepper. When the oil is shimmering (but not smoking), add the lovage, green garlic and crushed red pepper and cook for 5 minutes. Remove from the heat.

Remember, you can use the stalk of the plant as a drinking straw. We tried it last night with some mineral water and it embued a subtle celery/licorice flavor.