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Who is the cutest baby herb seedling in my herb garden?

Everyone loves an adorable baby, especially when that sweet little cutie is a baby herb seedling. Enjoy these pictures of all of the little babies growing in my kitchen window herb garden.

Keep reading, I’ll reveal my choice for cutest of the cute.

Genovese Basil

Basil babies have a soft, round look to them, like chubby little cheeks.

Oregano

A tiny little choir of oregano seedlings grew from itty-bitty black seeds.

Spinach

Nature is so funny. Would you believe these lanky green shoots turn into oval spinach leaves? Check out the little curly ends, awww.

Catnip

My catnip took so long to sprout, it’s still just emerging from its sleep. One miniature sproutling is just popping through.

Tomatillo

They’re not just any ordinary tomatillo. These baby herb seedlings are going to grow into purple tomatillos!

Parsley

Something about the leaves on a crowd of baby parsley reminds me of a flock of birds. Or at least, the way I draw them as V’s.

Bay leaves

Wee baby bay leaves…it should be a nursery rhyme. I love plants that start as tight buds. One day, they burst into an explosion of little leaves. I cheated a little with this one. It’s not a baby herb seedling, just baby leaf buds.

Ground cherries

You all know I’m partial to ground cherries. I created a salsa recipe featuring ground cherries instead of tomatoes, so unexpected. If I didn’t harvest these seeds myself from some ground cherries I picked up at this farm stand, I would not recognize this bowtie-shaped baby herb seedling.

Cilantro

So easily confused with baby parsley, cilantro leaves are more full and less spikey on the ends. They look like tiny little fans as they begin to form. Cilantro babies sprout in pairs; in other words, they’re twins!

Nasturtium

I confess. I have a favorite baby. It’s a nasturtium seedling. Every time I find one coming up in the garden, it makes me smile. Every. Time. Baby nasturtium leaves look like a little duck landed head first in the dirt with her feet up in the air. Too cute.

Newborn kale is pretty cute, too, but we’ll have to wait until I can do a feature on herb babies of the outdoor garden in May!

How about you? Do you have a favorite baby herb seedling? Leave a message in the comments.

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Exclusive, easy farm stand recipe: fresh ground cherry salsa (with substitutes)

Ok, ok, I have already told you it’s hard to find ground cherries. Don’t be discouraged. You can substitute fresh or canned tomatoes or tomatillos for the ground cherries in this easy, quick fresh ground cherry salsa recipe. If you don’t like spicy food, you can use a sweet pepper or no peppers instead of jalapenos.

I hope you don’t see this recipe elsewhere in books or online. As far as I know, this one is really an original, my own masterpiece and a big hit with company!

Spicy Ground Cherry Salsa

Need:
food processor
1 pint ground cherries (substitute: tomatoes, tomatillos)
2-3 jalapenos (substitute: sweet pepper, no peppers at all)
2 small cloves garlic
1 small onion
handful of fresh cilantro
tablespoon sea salt
2 tablespoons ground cumin
Juice squeezed from 1/4 lime

Steps:
1) remove ground cherries from their husks and rinse under cool water

Washing ground cherries or husk cherries in a vintage colander in my farmstand sink

2) remove the seeds from the jalapenos

slicing jalapenos to remove the seeds on a cutting board

3) cut the onion in half or in quarters

slices of onion and garlic in a food processor

4) put all of the ingredients into a food processor and grind them into a salsa

Fresh salsa in a food processor with cumin salsa verde jalapenos ground cherries

5) taste, preferably with a tortilla chip, and add more salt, lime or cumin to your liking

Substitutes:
ground cherries => 1 large or 2 small cans of tomatoes
ground cherries => 1 pint tomatillos, you should cut these and cook them down a bit
jalapenos => nothing, you really don’t need them if you don’t like the heat
jalapenos => 1 sweet pepper

When you or your guests aren’t snacking on it, keep the salsa refrigerated.

The beauty of this recipe is how E-A-S-Y it is. Just throw everything into a food processor and serve. Ground cherry salsa chills well. The flavor gets richer and more delicious the next day. It keeps in the fridge for up to a week.

If you’ve been meaning to pick up a new food processor, here’s an option.

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Removing the ground cherries from the husks takes 5 minutes, but I tend to do that while I’m watching tv. Then I leave the naked ground cherries in a bag in my fridge.

Using canned tomatoes, I’ve made this recipe in a few minutes with guests standing in my kitchen waiting for appetizers. Maybe it took me five minutes, but that would include running to the garden to get jalapenos and cilantro.

Need some other ideas for things to do with leftover herbs?

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Ground cherries. I did not expect so many questions.

Whoa. It’s not often that I’m stunned into silence.

I mean; when I first saw them at the farm stand, I thought ground cherries were cute and tasty. They fit my mission to showcase interesting and unusual farm stand finds perfectly. Plus, I could snack on them in the car during my long commute home.

It was fun creating a salsa recipe for them from scratch.

What I did not see coming was that so many of you would send requests about where to find them. I’m even getting ground cherry locator requests in-person from my long-time friends and neighbors.

If you can help us find other sources for ground cherries, please post an idea in the comments.

Ground cherries are also called husk cherries, winter tomatoes, and strawberry tomatoes, which would only be true if you saw the world in sepia tones.

RB ground cherries

How could I do this to you? I made you aware of these captivating little oddly-beige tomato-grape surprise lanternssurprise! there’s a berry inside that papery huskand then you frantically try to find them. And inevitably fail.

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If you happen to be one of the 20 million people who live within an hour of Connecticut, you can still get them from Rose’s Berry Farm Stand. Rose’s brings their ground cherries around to lots of farmers markets. I know they are in Hartford, New Haven, and Greenwich at least once a week from June until November.

Now if it’s the right time of year, and you promise to water them, you can buy ground cherry seeds. Not good with growing from seed? Have a lot of patience? Try a live plant.

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If you do happen to get your hands on some mildly sweet ground cherries, try my original recipe for fresh ground cherry salsa!

Where did you see them first? Ground cherries star in this farmstand5.

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Best 5 items at Roses Berry Farm Stand, Hartford, CT

August 24, 2018

Sometimes I write about favorites. And please, do let me know in the comments what your favorite farm stands are! Rose’s Berry Farm Stand is my current favorite.

If you know of Rose’s, you might be confused as to why a farm that is in South Glastonbury, CT, is listed here as Hartford. I go to their stand on Fridays at the Old State House Farmer’s Market.

What makes Rose’s Berry Farm Stand my current favorite?

#1 – variety, #2 – kind people #3 – freshness (OH! a bonus top 3 inside this farmstand5)

#5
Dinosaur kale (aka Lacinato kale)

rb-dino-kale

My little boy asked me recently what was the best vegetable for you. I told him the darkest, greenest vegetables are the best. Dino kale might fit that bill. The second reason it’s my #5 pick is that it is the toughest, thickest kale for making baked kale chips at home.

#4
Colorful raspberries

rb-two-color-rasp

It would be hard to feature a berry farm and choose their berries for a top picks list! What I liked so much about these raspberries is that you could buy them in a rainbow. My kids usually have fruit with breakfast. We like to make a rainbow designit’s fun for them to eat-by-the-bow and after the dark-green stuff, the most colorful fruits and veggies are great for your body.

#3
Collard Greens

rb-collards

There are few things I like more than stewed collard greens. Hey, I’m not the only one. Right before I bought a couple of bunches of these fresh, strong collards, the lady before me bought the entire display, and the farmer had to go to his truck to find me more. It’s a good sign when such a healthy veggie sells out fast!

#2
Rainbow carrots

rb-rainbow-carrots

Talk about eating your rainbow. Cue the rainbow carrots. Rose’s Berry Farm does a great job of growing long, straight colorful carrots. If you aren’t too familiar with the purple, pink, white or yellow versions of your favorite orange veggie, you should try them because they are fun and look so pretty in soups, salads and baked dishes. Butand you can disagree in the commentsif I’m totally honest, I think the orange carrots still have the strongest, best flavor.

#1
Ground cherries (in Latin: Physalis pruinose)

rb-ground-cherries

Ground cherries are my #1 pick because they represent one big reason to shop farm stands. Treasure hunting! It was exciting to find these little golden, berry-like relatives of tomatillos. You can peel back the delicate husk and eat them like grapes. Make a salsa, add them to salads (fruit or veggie-based salads). Basically, anything you can do with a tomato, grape, or berry, you can do with a ground cherry. More bang for your buck!

Did you see this one?…

Fancy’s Farm Stand, Orleans, MA

Back to farmstand5 full list.