Friday, January 15, 2010

Volume XVIII, Issue 11, February, 2010


The Charlotte Herb Guild Newsletter

February Meeting

Charlotte Herb Guild Annual Tea

February 9, 2010

Garden Council House
1820 East Seventh Street
Charlotte, NC 28204

Hosted by your Board Members

Please R.S.V.P before Feb. 1, via email or phone,
to Theresa Nardi

Minutes, January 12, 2010

The January Business meeting was called to order by President Dana DeBellis at 7:30 PM.

Ann Baldwin, Madge Eggena and Judy Powell were thanked as January hostesses.  February hostesses are your 2009-2010 Board members who are hosting the CHG Annual Tea.

No guests or new members were introduced.

The November meeting minutes were approved without amendment.

The Treasurer's report is available online but requires a username and password. Contact for more information.

President Dana Debillis made a motion to sponsor Craig Ritchie and his son, Craig, a CPCC student for the Davidson Symposium at a cost of $85.00 each. Craig is Eric Ritchie’s son and Eric is the manager of the McGill Rose Garden. The motion carried.

President Dana DeBellis made a motion to accept the following CHG Board nominations for year 2010-2011. The motion was accepted without amendment. The following are the newly elected officers for 2010-2011:

President  - Dana DeBellis
Vice President  - Lara Barnett
Treasurer - Dixie Kelly
Recording Secretary - Karen Sullivan
Program Chair  - Patti Harlan
Membership Chair - Theresa Nardi
Newsletter Editor  - Margery Orell

Patti Harlan presented ideas for the 2010-2011 meeting activities and members voted for their choices. Patti will report on the final winners.

  • Farm Field Trip, e.g., Laughing Owl, apiary or butterfly garden 
  • UNCC Botanical Garden Field Trip 
  • Asheville Herb Festival/Aboreteum plant sale, May1-2 Field Trip 
  • Little Herb House Field Trip to Raleigh 
  • Piedmont Herb Festival Field Trip 
  • Mushroom Farm Field Trip 
  • Winghaven Field Trip 
  • Hypertufa (stone troughs) 
  • Potpourri/Craft night Activity 
  • Soap making Presentation 
  • Medicinal Herbs Presentation 
  • NC Extension Agent Presentation 
  • CHG Member Presentation 
  • J White Garden in Plaza Midwood Field Trip 
  • Bonsai Garden Field Trip 
  • Stowe Garden Presentation 

Service Opportunities:

  • Doves Nest Home for Women (Last year’s choice) 
  • Friendship trays Herb Garden maintenance (new)

    Potluck Dinner:

    To be hosted by a member volunteer. Please volunteer to Patti Harlan if you are interested. Theresa Nardi who lives in Plaza Midwood is interested in hosting.

    The next meeting is the Annual Tea February 09, 2010.

    President DeBellis presented lovely gifts of herbal lotion to committee members and to Board members.

    Meeting adjourned.

    Respectfully submitted,
    Recording Secretary
    Theresa Nardi

    January Recipes

    Goat Cheese and Yogurt Dip
    Madge Eggena

    1 package goat cheese (Chevre)
    Yogurt - just enough to thin goat cheese to dip consistency
    Add your choice of herbs (cilantro, parsley, cutting celery)
    Green onion, to taste

    Salt and pepper, to taste

    Mix well. Best made ahead of time and served at room temperature.


    Madge Eggena

    8 ounces of goat cheese (Chevre)
    4 ounces organic butter
    1 tablespoon dried herbs (rosemary, sage, thyme, savory)
    Pinch of salt
    Pepper, to taste

    Bring Chevre and butter to room temperature. In a small bowl combine all ingredients.
    Serve at room temperature. Store unused portion in refrigerator.


    Madge Eggena

    Yield: 2 baguettes

    This is a no knead bread.
    4 cups water, divided
    1 tablespoon yeast
    1 teaspoon salt
    4 to 5 cups white flour

    Dissolve yeast in ½ cup of warm water. Add remaining water, salt and 4 cups of flour or maybe a little more if the slurry is too thin. Cover this with a towel and let this mixture soak overnight or longer (12 hours is great). Add enough flour so the dough is not too sticky and you can handle it with a little flour on your hands. Too much flour makes it heavy. Let the dough rest about an hour. This will make the dough more manageable. Form into loaves and let them rise a bit; then bake at 400 degrees for about 30 minutes.

    You may want to substitute some of the white flour with whole wheat. Do this in the soaking stage. This bread does great without kneading. The secret is letting it soak.

    Asparagus with Herbed Butter

    Ann Baldwin

    2 lbs. asparagus
    1/2 stick butter
    1/2 tsp. dill
    2tbsp. lemon juice

    Snap off tough ends of asparagus. Place them in
    a pyrex container with a small amount of water.
    Cook in microwave to desired tenderness and
    remove from microwave. Baste with herbed butter
    or sprinkle dill, squeeze lemon juice, and drizzle
    with butter. Remove from container and place on
    serving platter.

    Golden Winter Soup

    Ann Baldwin

    From Cooking Light

    Yield: Serves 8

    2 tablespoons butter
    5 cups peeled butternut squash, cut in 1/2-inch cubes
    2 cups peeled russet potatoes, cut in 1/2-inch cubes
    1 teaspoon kosher salt
    ½ teaspoon freshly ground pepper
    2 cups sliced leeks (about 2 medium leeks)
    4 cups fat-free, less sodium chicken broth
    1 cup half-and-half
    3 tablespoons chopped chives
    Freshly ground black pepper

    Melt butter in a large pot over medium high heat. Add squash, potato, salt and pepper. Sauté 3 minutes. Add leek; sauté 1 minute. Stir in broth; bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer 20 minutes or until potato is tender, stirring occasionally. Place half of potato mixture in blender. Remove center piece of blender lid to allow steam to escape. Secure blender lid on blender. Place a clean towel over opening in blender lid to avoid splatters. Blend until smooth. Pour into a large bowl. Repeat with remaining potato mixture. Stir in half-and-half. Garnish with freshly ground black pepper, if desired.

    Rosemary Shortbread

    Ann Baldwin

    Yield: 2 dozen cookies

    1 cup butter
    1 cup sugar
    3 cups all-purpose flour, divided
    2 to 3 tablespoons fresh rosemary, finely chopped

    Preheat the oven to 275 degrees. Thoroughly cream butter and sugar together. Add 2½ cups flour and mix. Coat a board with the remaining flour (½ cup) and turn the dough out on the board. Knead in the rosemary along with the flour until the dough cracks on the surface and doesn’t stick to the board. Roll it ¼ inch thick and cut into desired shape and size. 

    Bake on an ungreased cookie sheet 50 minutes or until lightly browned. Cool on racks. Adjust the cooking time for smaller cookies.

    Carrot Crumb Bundt Cake

    Judy Powell 

    2 cups sugar
    2 cups all-purpose flour
    2 teaspoons baking soda
    2 teaspoons baking powder
    1 teaspoon ground cloves
    1 tablespoon orange zest
    ½ teaspoon cinnamon
    1 teaspoon salt, optional
    5 tablespoons orange juice
    4 eggs
    1 cup oil
    ½ cup melted butter
    3 cups raw grated carrots
    ½ cup nuts (or raisins) 

    Preheat the oven to 325 degrees and grease and flour a Bundt pan. Mix together sugar, flour, baking soda, baking powder, ground cloves, orange zest, cinnamon, salt and orange juice in large bowl. Add eggs to mixture one at a time followed by oil. Fold in carrots and nuts or raisins. Pour mixture into prepared pan. Bake for 1 hour and 15 minutes. Top with White Cream Cheese Frosting (see below).

    White Cream Cheese Frosting:

    1 package (8 ounces) cream cheese
    4 tablespoons soft butter
    3 cups confectioners’ sugar
    1 teaspoon vanilla

    Currants, raisins (optional)

    Combine above ingredients to desired consistency. Spread on cake. Garnish with currants, raisins or just leave plain.

    Potato Chard Soup
    Judy Powell

    Yield: 2 quarts

    1 clove garlic
    1 medium onion, finely chopped
    2 stalks celery, finely chopped
    1 tablespoon canola oil
    4 cups potatoes, cubed
    5 cups chicken broth or water
    1 bay leaf
    4 cups Swiss chard, finely chopped
    1½ cups Red Russian kale, finely chopped
    ½ cup Chinese kale, finely chopped
    1 teaspoon thyme
    1 teaspoon parsley
    ½ teaspoon lemon zest, finely chopped
    Lemon juice, to taste
    Salt and pepper, to taste

    In a large pot, sauté garlic, onions and celery in oil. Add potatoes, stock or water, and bay leaf. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer for 30 minutes. Add chard, thyme and parsley. Cook for an additional 10 minutes. Season with lemon zest,lemon juice, salt and pepper. Remove from heat and let cool slightly. Puree in a blender or food processor and reheat.

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