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The sage in my little herb garden has done wonderfully this year. I am dreading the first frost because it will all wilt up and die. Before that first frost happens I want to use this beautiful looking and smelling plant. I’ve found a few delicious and very pretty ways of using this versatile and aromatic herb.
Sage has a nice broad leaf with a soft feel whose scent is clean. It can traditionally be used in dishes of poultry and pork recipes. It pairs very nicely in a butter based sauces. Below are the five ways I use sage in my home.
1. sage Butter
Herbs can be used in flavored butter. Once the butter is made it can be used in dishes, frozen, or given as an addition to a present. This is a simple and straight forward preparation.
Grab about 20 sage leaves, remove the stems, wash and fully dry the leaves. Allow a stick of unsalted butter to come to room temperature. Finely chop up the sage leaves. Fold the herbs into the butter and form a ball or log and wrap with plastic wrap. Place into freezer to form solidly. Ta-da Sage Butter!
2. Sage hummus
I made this hummus without tahini oil because D-Man, my older child, has a sesame seed and nut allergy. We can’t buy hummus from the store because of the these allergies, so I make my own. I have tried a couple of recipes, sage hummus is one of my favorite spreads on a pita chip.
Open a can of chick peas (garbanzo beans), rinse, and drain. Mince 2-3 cloves of garlic, use more or less depending on taste. Wash, dry, and coarsely chop sage leaves. Add all ingredients to food processor. While processing add olive oil and sea salt to taste. Continue to add and process until desired texture is achieved. Delicious!
3. Dried Sage
Drying sage is super easy and can be used throughout the winter months until your fresh plant grows back in the summer. Cut down a portion of the plant, depending on how much you think you will use. Gather the stems and tie together with baker’s string. Hang in dry and dark space with room for air to circulate around, for best drying. Let dry for at least 4 weeks until brittle to the touch. Place into air tight container to use when needed.
4. Sage salt
Flavored salt is another great way to use and preserve herbs to be used for later. Take your fresh ingredients of sage leaves, lemon thyme, garlic and salt. I use about 1/2 cup sea salt, 2 cups fresh sage leaves, 1 cup lemon thyme, and 1 clove garlic. I pulse the ingredients a few times in the food processor. Try not to over process it ruins the texture of the salt. Spread out on a baking sheet and bake for 20 minutes. Allow to cool and store in mason jar. This can be used in sauces and on meats. You can add any herbs you want, but this post is about sage.
5. Sage wreath
This is the last item you can use sage to create. It’s a craft and not a recipe, but you can use the leaves as they dry out in recipes. Just remember as you use them the wreath with look more and more bare. I used a 12″ foam wreath form from the dollar store, garden wire, needle nosed pliers and wire snips. This wreath used about 10 stalks off my sage plant. I arranged the leaves from top to bottom. I really filled in and overlapped the gathered leaves. Remember this will quickly wilt and sag so you need to add more wire sections to hold it in place.To make the wire stays. I clipped the wire about 1 inch long, held in the needle nose snips and bent down the wire.
Once completed I used a colorful ribbon to place over my kitchen sink. I enjoy the aroma and the look. Notice the difference in the leaves from when I was assembling the wreath to one day later. The sage leaves do droop, but that’s because it’s not made out of plastic.
Sage is a wonderfully versatile and tasty herb that can be used in your kitchen and for decoration. I hope you enjoy making all the herb inspired flavorings and crafts.