Fines Herbes Blend (Epices Fines)
Fines Herbes is the classic combination of herbs that captures the essence of Mediterranean cooking. Used to season soups, sauces, and omelets, fines herbs bring a light flavor to your savory dishes.
Fines herbes are made up of a combination of herbs that are generally agreed upon as consisting of parsley, chives, tarragon and chervil. Some cooks also include marjoram, cress, cicely, lovage, thyme, dill, basil or lemon balm in their fines herbes blends. Add your fines herbs at the end of the recipe's cooking time, crumbling the herbs in your hands just prior to use to release their natural oils.
What distinguishes all these herbs as "fine" is that they are more light and are less pungent and resinous as the herbs in the French bouquet garni. [But, take note, thyme and parsley usually *do* appear in bouquet garni. Fine cuisine is a puzzlement.] Herbs in bouquets garnis release their flavors during long cooking processes.
Since the flavor of fines herbs is light, its flavor while not overwhelm lighter dishes. Blend fines herbs with extra virgin olive oil to create a flavorful dip for bread. Fines herbes are a perfect match for egg dishes, and in buttery or egg-y sauces, salad dressings, or mayonnaise. Fines herbs are a crucial ingredient in beef bourguignonne and Bernaise sauce. Sprinkle fines herbs on whole chicken before roasting - about 1 tsp. per pound.