Chives, Chives and More Chives!
June 27, 2013
Posted By: Shaunescy
This is a repost of an article I wrote last year, but since it's been repinned on Pinterest about 50 times in the past week, I thought it might be time to share it again.
On Friday, I picked up The Best Box of Veggies from the Gallatin Valley Botanical CSA and in it was a large bunch of chives. Picking up the horn to talk about all these goodies to Grandma Shirley, turned out to be a goldmine of healthy info about the humble Chive. She pulled out her recipe cards and found one from, The Complete Guide to Natural Healing, and is excerpted below:
A part of the same botanical family as onions, scallions and garlic, chives grow from
small bulbs and have a long history of culinary and medicinal uses. In the Middle Ages, chives were promoted as a cure for melancholy and believed to drive away evil spirits.
Today, We know that chives and chive flowers are high in Vitamin C, folic acid and potassium. Therefore, they should be routinely added to recipes to help restore vital nutrients lost in cooking. This herb’s tangy, aromatic taste comes from its high concentration of sulfur compounds and other essential oils, which are also partly responsible for its healing properties. Chives ease stomach distress, protect against heart disease and stroke and may help the body fight bacteria that can cause disease. In addition, the herb may increase the body’s ability to digest fat.
Chives are valued for their many essential minerals, including cardiac-friendly potassium, bone-strengthening calcium and blood-building iron. And unlike most other members of the onion family, chives are high in folic acid (a B vitamin), vitamin A and Vitamin C.
In fact, just 5 1/2oz. of chives supplies enough vitamin C to meet your daily requirement of 60 mg.
The high vitamin C concentration chives can help prevent colds. They also speed recovery if a cold develops by helping the body to expel mucus; the sulfurous compounds in chives are natural expectorants.
Cut chives just before you are ready to use them to preserve their vitamins, aroma and flavor. Chives are delicate; to prevent the loss of essential oils, snip them with kitchen shears rather than chopping or grinding them.
Don’t heat chives or they will lose their valuable vitamin C as well as their digestive properties.
The chive's delicate purple flowers have a milder flavor than the leaves and add a decorative touch to salads, herb oils and other dishes.
To make chive-flower oil:
Add 1 1/2 oz. of the blossoms to 1 quart of vegetable oil.
After a week, the oil will turn lílac and take on the fragrance of the chive flowers. Use the oil on salads or in cooking-keep it refrigerated when not in use.
To make your own chive salt:
lf you like the oniony flavor of chives, use chive salt to add zip to all sorts of dishes. First, add some chives to some salt. Then bake the mixture in the oven to dry the leaves and blend the flavors. Store in an airtight jar.
Freeze chives for future use:
Frozen chives tend to retain more flavor than dried chives.
Snip fresh chives into small pieces, then place them in an ice-cube tray and fill it
To thaw, put a chive cube in a strainer.
Personally, I love to simply chop them and add them into my potato salads. What could be more summery than that? And Potato Salad is so easy.
Easy Potato Salad
• Cut potatoes into cubes, boil till cooked but not mushy. I like to use baby reds but any will do. Rinse in cold water to cool.
• Cut a can of black olives into halves.
• Toss together with a simple dressing of dijon mustard, mayo and olive oil. Chill for one hour.
• Sprinkle with a generous handful of chives and serve.
You could also add in sliced boiled eggs or a little dill. Enjoy!
All my best, BunnyFufu - The Housewife