By Laura Coffee, Marketing & Owner Services Manager, Co-op Owner
Dill is a lovely and unique herb. While many of us associate it primarily with pickles, it has many other uses, pairing well with cheese, fish, green vegetables, potatoes, lemon, garlic, mustard, and much more. It is also one of the preferred plants on which Swallowtail butterflies lay their eggs. If you have room in your garden or space for a pot on your porch or balcony it can be a fun plant to grow, serving as both a tasty kitchen herb and a useful pollinator habitat. Despite having a very distinctive flavor, I find the taste of dill difficult to describe. It is light, bright, almost sour (or citrusy?), a little bit green, and very unique. It makes me think of spring and summer no matter what time of the year it is. If you haven’t used dill outside of making pickles, I really suggest trying it. If you would like to participate in future installments of this series and receive a free sample of the featured herb or spice, you can sign up through the CRDL.
Some interesting ways to use dill:
- In creamy dips.
- Added to scrambled eggs.
- On baked fish with lemon and vegetables.
- In tuna salad.
- In salad dressings.
- On a cold bean salad with feta.
- In a garlicy hummus.
- As an alternative to parsley in tabouli.
Creamy Dill Pasta
- 8oz dried pasta*
- 3 whole carrots
- 1/4 cup grated parmesan
- 3 Tbsp half and half or cream
- 2 Tbsp dried dill
- 1 clove garlic, crushed and finely chopped
- Salt to taste
- Optional, 2-3 cups spinach, collards, or kale
Bring a pot of water to boil while slicing the carrots into medallions. Boil the pasta and carrots together in salted water according to package directions. While the pasta is cooking, combine the dill, cream, parmesan, and garlic in a small bowl and stir until well combined. Once the pasta is done, drain it, but don’t rinse. Combine the dill mixture and pasta while the pasta is still hot, and toss until well-coated. Add salt to taste and serve.
If you want more color or more veggies, you can also add 2-3 cups of baby spinach to the pasta along with the dill mixture. The heat from the pasta will be enough to cause the spinach to wilt and become soft. To use a more hardy green, like collards or kale, cut into small pieces and boil along with the pasta and carrots.
*You can use any type of pasta you like, but I suggest choosing one that takes at least 10 minutes to cook, so the dill has more time to infuse into the cream.
Simple Dill Potatoes
- 3lbs red or yellow potatoes
- 1 cup plain, unsweetened yogurt
- 2 Tbsp dried dill
- 1 Tbsp yellow mustard
- 1 tsp salt
Cut your potatoes into bite-sized pieces, leaving the peels on, and boil until desired doneness is reached. Alternatively, the potatoes can be roasted for a different flavor and texture if desired. While the potatoes are cooking, combine all the other ingredients in a large bowl so the flavors can begin to meld together. Drain the potatoes and combine with the other ingredients while still warm but no longer steaming. (If the potatoes are too hot they can cause the yogurt to separate.) This dish can be served warm or chilled. This makes a pleasant side dish for grilled or roasted foods, as it is both light in flavor and very filling. If you have more than you need, get creative with the leftovers, adding an egg and some shredded cheddar and pan frying into little patties.