We’re heading into April, and the Spring sunshine is beginning to peek through Kansas City, welcoming the opportunity to grill, host your guests outdoors and add some color to your cooking with herb gardens, backyard veggie patches and pitchers of flavored lemonade. I say, bring it on!
This week I’d like to spruce up your personal Gangsta Goodies Kitchen with some ideas on indoor herb gardens to not only impress the friends and family you have coming over for brunch or dinner bonding, but to get your inner Gangsta in touch with nature and appreciative of the love and flavor our dearest herbs bring to the table. Ya’ll need to know that your meals will take on a special glow with the added touch of your own home-grown herbs. More importantly, the therapeutic effects of nurturing your cooking style directly from the food source is absolute bliss for the Gangsta soul.
Herbs can be grown outdoors of course, but I can’t deny that the special glint in a guest’s eye when they spot my herbs growing beautifully on my kitchen window makes this indoor project so worthwhile! Whether you’re a beginner or a pro at gardening, we all need to get on the same page about the basics to make this kitchen baby thrive.
1. Sun is your friend
We all love the sunshine, and herbs feel no different about their Vitamin D and photons to bring you the brightest greens and strongest flavors. When you’re choosing the home for your green seedlings, make sure there is adequate, constant light flowing through. If it’s still getting cold at night, below 65 degrees, move them over to a warmer place to sleep. Basil especially is not fond of temperature drops!
2. Living space is key
Prepare a great space for your tiny garden, ensuring that the soil is well drained so there’s no oversaturation of water or sitting pools that would harm the growing process. Holes at the bottom of the pot are best, with a saucer that catches any excess. When you select your soil, make sure it’s well equipped with gardening nutrients. If you prefer to add your own, that’s okay too, just make sure they are getting their regular dose to grow proud and strong for your food!
3. Herbs worthy of the Gangsta Goodies Kitchen
With all the love and care you’ll be putting into your new friends, it’s best we make sure they’ll equally enjoy being your long-term kitchen mates. Here are the top plants that will flourish indoors:
- Chives – colorful AND flavorful
- Mint – for the Spring and Summer mojitos and dessert menu
- Oregano – personally, the smell of oregano gets my cooking juices going, and serves well as a flavor or garnish for your plates
- Parsley – endless uses and constantly in demand
- Rosemary – that smell of Rosemary flowing through the house, ya’ll…mmmmmm
- Thyme – a little goes a looong way with this flavor bad boy
- Basil – ‘nuff said.
- Cilantro – I always say, the only way to serve cilantro is fresh
- Bay – these leaves pack a punch and do well for the soups on cold days, but are also a great addition to braises and rubs, or general seasoning.
Drawer Herb Garden (Photo Credit – IKEA)
You can find a few more options for indoor herbs based on your cooking style with some direct care tips. If you want to really be Gangsta and have the kitchen space, step it up with some actual veggies! (If you happen to do this, send me pics so I can feature you on my show!)
Personally, I went a little Pinterest crazy on this topic and some of ya’ll out there with your indoor gardens are so Gangsta with your presentation, I can’t even compete. But these are some of my favorites to add some fresh window sass to my window sills. Can’t wait to see what ya’ll do with the inspiration I only hope I’ve planted in you! Send photos!