Sometimes it’s hard for me to figure out how to use a whole bunch of certain herbs. Basil is easy, but dill can be harder to use. I may find a bunch of dill in my CSA box or at the farmers’ market, use two tablespoons of the herb and then wonder what to do with the rest.
So, I’ve been a bit of a “dill-ettante” (couldn’t help that!) lately, looking for ways to use dill. Inspired by Mark Bittman’s “101″ posts for his former Minimalist blog (here’s an example), I’ve listed several links or brief recipes. Please share any dill recipes that you’ve enjoyed!
Ways to use dill
Fresh dill is generally best used in cold dishes or sprinkled on just-cooked food. It tends to lose flavor when cooked.
Mustard-dill sauce for salmon: I added a few teaspoons of dill to Mark Bittman’s recipe for creamy vinaigrette when I was mixing everything in the food processor. I also added one more teaspoon of Dijon mustard to the recipe for more flavor (for a total of 2 teaspoons of mustard). Then I garnished my salmon with a few sprigs of dill. It’s a creamy, tart companion for salmon.
Roquefort blue cheese dressing for beet and greens salad: I adapted and added dill to this recipe from Sally Schneider’s A New Way to Cook. I don’t like to use sour cream, so I used whole milk yogurt instead. I replaced the sherry vinegar for the white wine vinegar I had handy. Again, I added dill to the mix in the food processor.
I poured the dressing over a salad of spinach and pickled beets. Roquefort cheese and beets are stalwart companions. If you don’t care for pickled beets, roasted and sliced beets also work. Beets are in season in South Florida from about December to March.
This is a salad which should be dressed right before serving, as the beets quickly release their juices, turning the salad a pink shade which some may find unappetizing. I also recommend drying the pickled beets with a paper towel before placing on the salad. It still tastes delicious, but serve quickly!
Raita sauce with naan: I use 5-6 ounces of my favorite goat’s milk yogurt (Erivan), a teaspoon of cumin, a pinch of salt, a chopped cucumber and chopped dill to make a raita dipping sauce. I serve with homemade or store-bought naan, or as side dish with an Indian meal. The store-bought naan is best when brushed with butter and warmed up beforehand.
Fresh corn with dill and butter: Cut the kernels off several cobs of corn. Steam the corn for just a minute. For caramelized corn, cook the kernels in a skillet. You should barely cook them for maximum crunch and sweetness; you can even serve the fresh corn raw. Add chopped dill and butter. (The Ravenous Pig restaurant shared another great fresh corn recipe.)
Cucumber-dill tea sandwiches: Cut the crusts off very thin-sliced white bread. Cut each slice of bread into two triangles or into a larger square. Spread butter or cream cheese on each slice. Lay two thin cucumber slices and a sprig of dill on each piece of bread. (My tea sandwiches at this Mother’s Day Tea would have been livened up with some sprigs of dill.)
Smoked salmon and herbed cream cheese tea sandwiches: I make these at my annual Mother’s Day Tea. You can also sprinkle fresh dill on smoked salmon for a breakfast buffet.
Dill butter: Mix fresh minced dill into butter to your liking. Spread on bread or place a pat on a cooked fish filet. The Kitchn also gave me a great idea: freeze the herb with olive oil in an ice cube tray for future use.
Herbed popovers: I often use fresh, leftover herbs to make popovers. I rely on the one from Mark Bittman’s How to Cook Everything. These are best consumed fresh out of the oven. Enhance the dill flavor by serving with a pat of dill butter. (see above)
Fried egg with dill: Sprinkle chopped dill over your fried or scrambled eggs for breakfast in the morning (or anytime).
Dill and other herbs will keep for a week or two if you store them this way: Place upright in a cup of water filled with about one inch of water. Loosely cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate. This tip, which I read in Farmer John’s Cookbook works well for me. The only herb this may not work so well for is basil as it blemishes and wilts.