The calendar tells us that spring begins in March. Already the days are a bit longer and the first flowers have appeared. Those who love gardening can’t wait to start playing in the dirt! Hold on though. Here in Central North Carolina it is still too early for planting some of the warm weather veggies such as tomatoes, cucumbers and peppers. It is best to wait until after the last frost to put these into the ground.
In the meantime, treat yourself to an indoor pot of fresh parsley. Curly or Italian, either type will do fine on a sunny windowsill (or other sunny spot in your home). Simply follow the instructions on the seed packet and in roughly 3 weeks, tiny sprigs of parsley will appear. Once this happens, either move to a bigger pot or transfer to an outdoor garden. Be ready to enjoy an abundance of freshly snipped parsley as needed!
What to do with Parsley
A cheerful parsley plant goes well in any kitchen….AND we can eat it! This popular herb is a good source of vitamin C and antioxidants (plant compounds that fight to keep us healthy). Fresh chopped parsley adds bold flavor to salads. A sprig of parsley on fish, pasta, chicken or deviled eggs is a nice touch. A sprinkle of chopped fresh parsley is delicious on hot soup.
Try this recipe for making parsley pesto.
Written by Jenny Favret, M.S., R.D., L.D.N.
Nutritionist, Duke Pediatrics Healthy Lifestyles Program