Chives are much more than just a garnish, although a sprinkling of chives provides both a fresh fragrance and bright green color on a plate. When blooming, the entire scape is a decorative addition to the plate, or you can pull apart the blossoms into ‘confetti’ to add to a salad. The mild onion flavor of chives plays well with eggs, goat or cream cheeses, potatoes, salads, soups, fish, and shellfish, and herbs such as parsley, mint, or tarragon. A Chive Vinaigrette is as simple as combining extra virgin olive oil, white wine or champagne vinegar, a touch of garlic, salt, and a generous handful of freshly cut chives.
We harvested lots of the chives that grow at the Inn for this year’s tour. It’s a good thing you can harvest the outer leaves of this perennial, and they quickly grow back, because we served chives all weekend long! The Welcome Reception Friday for inn guests featured Lemon Chive Hummus with pita chips, Sun-Dried Tomato Chive Pesto Spread, and Herbed Cream Cheese with crackers, and a chance to sample our Frosty Virgin Marys in a more spirited version with the addition of pepper or lemon vodka. Saturday morning our guests enjoyed Chive Parmesan Roasted Potatoes with the Quattro Fromaggio Frittata garnished with cherry tomatoes and a fresh Basil Pesto, and Sunday’s savory entree was Chive and Cheddar Strata with a Red Pepper Tomato Coulis. Everyone on the Inn to Inn Herb Tour sampled the Frosty Virgin Marys, together with the Sun-Dried Tomato Chive Pesto and Italian Cheese and Chive Biscuits. Since we still had some guests from the Tour staying Sunday evening, Monday’s breakfast featured our newest variation on Eggs Benedict ~ an English Muffin topped with prosciuto, egg, asparagus, and hollandaise flavored with the Sun-Dried Tomato Chive Pesto.
Check out the Herb Tour or the Recipes Section on the site to find some of this year’s recipes plus ones from past tours as well, when we featured dill, oregano, sage, lemon basil, and mint. The Inn to Inn Herb Tour is an annual event in late May or early June, so if you missed our Chive extravaganza, we hope to see you next year and in the meantime, we hope you enjoy the recipes!