Heatons Herb of the Month: Rosemary

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By Dorothy Connor on behalf of SLH

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Rosemary is for remembrance, having a connection with the passing of loved ones that goes back millenia. In the play “Hamlet”, Ophelia says “There’s rosemary, that’s for remembrance”. At humanist funerals nowadays, guests are sometimes given a sprig of rosemary to take home.

If you would like some tips for growing rosemary at home, head down to one of the Heaton Mersey Garden Maintenance sessions and speak to the friendly team of gardeners.

If you’ve already got some tarragon in your garden, why not give this recipe a try?

Root Veg Ratatouille

A British version of Provencale ratatoille, using our good old reliable root veg instead of aubergine, peppers & courgettes! Rosemary is the featured herb, although thyme is also used in this recipe.

Ingredients (for 4 portions):

Three 400g tins tomatoes (or a kilo of fresh tomatoes, skinned and deseeded)
2 sprigs rosemary (~4 inch each or 2 tsp dried rosemary)
6 sprigs thyme (about 2-3 g)
4 garlic cloves (or 4 tsp garlic granules or 2 tsp garlic powder)
1 tsp salt (optional)
170 g onion (about 2 small onions)
160 g celeriac (or substitute celery and pretend it’s a root veg!)
160 g swede (about 1 medium)
80 g carrots
1 large potato (about 300 g)
40 g edamame or other beans


1. Peel veg that need peeling. (I don’t peel the potatoes, just cut off any blemishes). Peel and chop the garlic cloves.
2. Chop all the veg into chunks, bitesize or whatever you like.
3.  Empty the tins of tomato (or roughly chopped fresh tomatoes) into a saucepan at medium heat, just bubbling.

4.  Add the herbs & garlic. (Don’t overdo the herbs – have a taste of the liquid halfway through cooking and add herbs if you think the taste is not herby enough.)
5.  Add the veg chunks, but if you are using pre-cooked beans add them halfway through cooking,
6.  Cook for about 20-30 minutes, depending on your chunk size. (Potato chunks cook quicker so best to make them larger than other chunks.) Stir every 5 minutes at least.
7Don’t overcook the veg chunks.  After 20 minutes, start poking the veg with a fork every 5 mins or so. Remember, the veg will keep on cooking for a bit after you remove the pan from the hob.
8.  Serve and eat!