Fresh, Seasonal Recipes from Local Author and Gardener Theresa Mieseler

A copy of "Beyond Rosemary, Basil and Thyme" by Theresa Mieseler
These herbaceous recipes from "Beyond Rosemary, Basil and Thyme" author Theresa Mieseler are distinctive and delicious.

This article originally appeared as part of the story Herbivore in the September/October 2019 issue.

Beyond Rosemary, Basil and Thyme’s recipes run from more common cookbook entries (fish stew, pork patties with fennel and rosemary chicken, for example) to more distinctive recipes (arugula and red sorrel salad, lemon verbena pound cake and sea bass with chervil, to name a few).

The book is available at shadyacres.com, Amazon, the Minnesota Landscape Arboretum Gift & Garden Store, Kowalski’s, Lakewinds Food Co-op, Chanhassen, and Terrace Horticultural Books, St. Paul.

Theresa’s Seasoning Blend
(Use dried herbs. This is perfect to add to or use with butter, chicken, fish, mustard, omelets and vegetables.)

  • 2 Tbsp. Chopped parsley
  • 2 Tbsp. Chopped, basil
  • 2 Tbsp. Oregano
  • 1 Tbsp. Thyme
  • 1 Tbsp. Rosemary
  • 1 Tbsp. Garlic
  • 1 tsp. Lovage
  • ¼ tsp. Cayenne

Blend all, and transfer to a glass jar with a lid. Store in a cool, dark space.

Creamy Roasted Tomato Soup
(At summer’s end when ideas run dry when it comes to recipes with tomatoes, Mieseler suggests this soup. “Heirloom tomatoes are the most flavorful,” she says. “Sungold is a very tasty cherry tomato and works well in this recipe. Use more or fewer poblano peppers, depending on your heat preference.”)

  • 8 Large tomatoes
  • 3 Cloves garlic, peeled and mashed or finely chopped
  • 1 Tbsp. Fresh Mexican oregano, chopped
  • 6-8 Medium-sized fresh poblano peppers
  • 2 Tbsp. Extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 Medium sweet onion, chopped
  • 5 cups Vegetable broth
  • 1 tsp. Sea salt
  • 1 tsp. Black pepper
  • 1 cup Half-and-half

Garnish

  • 3-4 Cherry tomatoes, quartered
  • Marjoram or chopped basil leaves
  • ½ cup Goat cheese, chopped

Preheat oven to broil; place rack at highest level. Roast the large tomatoes on a rimmed baking sheet, turning once, until the skins burst and juice is coming out of the tomatoes. Cool, peel and pour the juices with the tomatoes into a blender. Process until smooth. Set aside.

Roast the chili peppers, turning frequently, for 10-15 minutes or until blackened on all sides. Place in a brown paper bag for 20-30 minutes. Peel off the skins, and removed the stems and seeds. Rinse to remove bits of skin and seeds (discard), and chop into quarter-inch pieces. Set aside.

In a five-quart Dutch oven, heat the oil over medium heat. Add the onion and cook, stirring frequently for 4-5 minutes or until lightly browned. Add the garlic and oregano, toss, and cook a minute or two longer. Add the poblanos and tomatoes and cook, stirring frequently, for 8-10 minutes or until thick and reduced.

Stir in the broth, and simmer over low heat for 45 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Add the half-and-half. Serve in bowls, topped with cubes of goat cheese, marjoram or basil and cherry tomatoes.

Mieseler's Go-to Herbs
While it’s difficult to pluck a favorite out of Mieseler’s beloved herbs, she does highlight a few.

  • Lemon verbena (fresh)
  • Rosemary, Shady Acres (fresh or dried)
  • Bronze fennel (fresh or frozen)
  • Scented geraniums (purely for their scent but can be used to flavor cakes)
  • Cat's whiskers (a novelty with white/lavender wispy flowers, which are great for hummingbirds)