Now Sowing: Chives (mid-September)

Image of chives
Image courtesy of Baker Creek Heirloom Seeds

Common Name: Chives (Allium schoenoprasum or Allium tuberosum)

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Seed Saving Level: Medium - Separate from other varieties of chives

Planting: Sow directly ¼ inch deep, 4-6 inches apart and press firmly. Full/partial sun; water moderately. Germinates in 7-14 days and reaches maturity in 30-50 days.

Seed Saving: Let the flowers go to seed and just as the seed pod opens, cut from plant and put in a paper bag and let it dry for 3-4 weeks.

Source: Seed to Seed: Seed Saving and Growing Techniques for Vegetable Gardeners (2002) by Suzanne Ashworth

Recipe: Spring Chive Oil
2 cups finely sliced fresh chives
1 ½ cups canola oil, chilled
Fine sea salt

Combine the chives and the oil in a blender, and blend on low, medium, and then high speed, stopping now and then to scrape down the sides, until the oil becomes pureed and bright green, about 3 minutes. Add salt to taste and blend to incorporate. Pour the oil into a shallow dish and chill immediately in the refrigerator to maintain its bright color and flavor. Once it’s cold, transfer the chive oil to a storage container and refrigerate for 1 week. To freeze it, transfer the oil to small heavy self-seal plastic bags, press on them to remove all the air, seal and freeze for up to 1 year...handy for adding a bright summery jolt to sauteed vegetables, dips, sauces, and plain starches, especially mashed potatoes.

Source: The New Midwestern Table (2013) by Amy Thielen

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