A bouquet garní is a French mixture of loose herbs, collected fresh and assembled according to the dish you wish to flavor. When we speak of French herbs it conjures up images of tarragon, savory and thyme, but a bouquet garní can be used for anything from Indonesian soup, to Italian stew.
We’re lucky here in western Washington, with our mild weather, that even on most Thanksgiving morns; we can sneak outside with snips and come back into the warm glow of the kitchen with a fist full of rosemary, parsley, oregano, sage and thyme, among other flavorings. A bouquet garní can be used in or alongside the turkey to season the meat and drippings or used in the stock made from the carcass.
For those of you who have kitchen twine, that’s the traditional means of tying the bouquet, but I simply use a light colored cotton yarn. Tying the stems tightly round and round several times, I finish with a bow. A bow with very long loops and end allows me to tie it to the pot handle for ease of removal, and the long loops are easy to snag with a fork when the bundle has given up its essence.
© Colleen Miko, 2011