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Growing Your Own Herbs: Cheap, Easy And Makes For Fun Drinks, Too

I have a close relationship with the herbs I grow. And unlike some of my previous relationships, herbs actually seem to thrive on neglect. I never do much for them other than snip the blossoms when they bolt and once in a while throw a little water on them. And yet they keep coming back. Nancy Leson reports the same results. 

If you haven't been growing your own herbs, why not give it a try? There's all kinds of herb starts available this time of year at greenhouses, big hardware stores, and even some supermarkets. You don't have to do much but put them in a pot and leave them alone to grow. At least that's all I do and ain't nothin' croaked on me yet.

Even, as Nancy says, if you don't have a back yard or patio, "you can just put [them] right by a window. I keep mine by the sink for much of the year."

Cucumber Soda With Basil And Mint

Herbs are great for drinks, too. I mixed up a dry cucumber soda with cukes, basil and mint. Here's how:

Make a simple syrup (2 cups sugar/1 cup water) and bring to a boil. Add thinly sliced whole cucumber including seeds, about 10 basil and 10 mint leaves. Stir it up, cover and turn off heat. Let steep for 30 minutes.

Strain out the solids as you pour the mix into a clean jar. Try a couple tablespoons in a glass and add cold seltzer. I've found that a little gin with that does no harm.

"Ah me. Love cannot be cured by herbs."

– Ovid

Dick Stein joined KNKX in January 1992. He retired in 2020 after three decades on air. During his storied radio career, he hosted the morning jazz show, co-hosted and produced "Food for Thought" with Nancy Leson and wrote and directed the Jimmy Jazzoid live radio musical comedies and 100 episodes of Jazz Kitchen.