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Need suggestions for using herbs de provence

KingsKetz Feb 13, 2007 03:59 AM

Not too long ago my nephew gave me a large, and I mean LARGE crock of herbs de provence from William Sonoma. This is the large, have it for the rest of your life size. It was an interesting choice because I have NEVER used herbs de provence and I don't have a clue about what to use it on and how to best use it. Your suggestions would be greatly appreciated. I'd love to make something with it and serve it to him sometime soon. Thanks!

  1. l
    LIMary Feb 13, 2007 04:11 AM

    You are lucky. There are cheaper varieties without lavender. I use it on roasted chicken and turkey. I'm anxious to hear what else it's used for, but it's not cheap so I save it for those two.

    PS. can you please tell me how to post a new topic? When I bring my screen up for Boards, I get a list of current topics but no option for a new post.

    1 Reply
    1. re: LIMary
      TorontoJo Feb 13, 2007 04:37 AM

      Go to the board you want to post on. At the top of the page, under the board title, is a button that says "add new topic". Use that.

    2. LulusMom Feb 13, 2007 04:39 AM

      Roast vegetables. Whatever kind you like, cut up, toss with some olive oil and some of the herbs and then roast until done (timing will depend on what vegetable you choose). I'm especially fond of the combination of these herbs with roasted sweet potatoes with onions.

      1. LindaWhit Feb 13, 2007 04:47 AM

        Use on roasted chicken, roasted potatoes (toss with olive oil and then the Herbes de Provence), it's great on lamb (or in lamb stews).

        1. a
          Addisonchef Feb 13, 2007 05:03 AM

          I too use it on roasted chicken and veggies. On the chicken, a little sprinkling of s & p, cinnamon, and a dash of garlic powder with the herbes. Mmmmm.....

          1. potterstreet Feb 13, 2007 05:06 AM

            i use them in my ratatouille.

            one of my favorite ways to use them is to break two eggs and put in a bunch of the herbes de provence, whatever fresh herbs i have around, salt and pepper and almost glaze my roast chicken with the whole mess. parts of it fall off into the pan juices which makes for a really yummy start to a gravy. it makes the chicken look positively beautiful too. i can't remember whose technique it is - perhaps patricia wells.

            1 Reply
            1. re: potterstreet
              l8eehwk May 10, 2011 03:14 PM

              I was intrigued by this glazing roast chicken with eggs. Can you go into more detail about how you do this?

            2. m
              mothrpoet Feb 13, 2007 06:43 AM

              Roast pork! Ditto for the roasted veggies, olive oil, garlic, onions, and the yummy juices from the herbed pork......scrumptious!

              2 Replies
              1. re: mothrpoet
                Cheese Boy Feb 13, 2007 08:03 PM

                Pork roasts ... yes indeed. I make a very delicious one, and one of the key elements is utilizing Herbes de Provence. The roast is remarkably good every time! FYI, I find the Lavender to be a bit
                overpowering - so I remove some of it beforehand.

                1. re: Cheese Boy
                  prunefeet Feb 15, 2007 12:13 PM

                  I agree, good as it is w roast chicken, I like to take thick pork chops, marinate them in olive oil, a few tablesp of herbes de p and chopped garlic. So so good, and smells amazing.

              2. singleguychef Feb 13, 2007 07:54 AM

                Ditto on the roasted veggies! But also, when summer arrives, do the same technique of olive oil and sea salt and herbs and then GRILL the vegetables! This was my first introduction to herbs de provence and somehow the sweet-lemony taste of the combination of herbs work beautifully with grilled vegetables.

                I've also found that herbs de provence is a nice combination for shrimp, either grilled or sauteed on a pan. Again, all the shrimp needs is salt, olive oil and your herbs de provence.

                Whenever I want to give my dishes a "French country" feel, that's when I use the herbs. So for example, I made a French carrot soup, and then to accompany the soup, I sliced a baquette, spread so butter, and then sprinkled a pinch of herbs de provence on top of the bread before toasting in my oven to make a nice crostini or toasted baquette slices to go with the soup.

                1 Reply
                1. re: singleguychef
                  perk May 12, 2011 12:36 PM

                  Me, too. Love the flavor of grilled vegetables with herbs de provence. Just did a batch of the grill the other night. Sooooo good!

                2. bolivianita Feb 13, 2007 08:05 AM

                  Clams and linguine with white wine and butter

                  1. c
                    chaussonauxpommes Feb 13, 2007 10:02 PM

                    I use herbs de provence so often it's hard to think of specific applications. A hefty pinch is great in scrambled eggs and omlettes, especially with goat cheese. Wonderful on roasted chicken like others have said. To make my favorite roasted potatoes I toss quartered small potatoes (like baby red or yellow of fingerlings) with olive oil, herbs de provence, and Montreal steak seasoning and roast at a high temp (usually with a pork tenderloin). I know that probably sounds like a funny combo of spices, but the steak seasoning adds a really nice spicy bite that I think goes well with the herbs. Sometimes I put HdP in my chicken pot pies, if I don't have fresh taragon or dill at the time. I think you'll find many uses once you start using it in everyday dishes. Have fun!

                    2 Replies
                    1. re: chaussonauxpommes
                      Tom P Mar 1, 2007 07:25 AM

                      I also love them in scrambled egss, with goat cheese. Yum.

                      1. re: Tom P
                        lulou23 May 12, 2011 03:44 PM

                        Yes, wonderful in omelets.

                    2. chefaltieri Feb 13, 2007 10:08 PM

                      I have used HdP in creme brulees... steeping it in the hot cream in cheesecloth before tempering the eggs. Also in risotto as well as roasted duck in port. It can also be useful when using figs.

                      1. f
                        Fleur Feb 13, 2007 10:57 PM

                        I use Herbes de Provence all the time. 1/2-1 teaspoon in a Meyer Lemon Vinaigrette made with good quality EVOO brings a taste of the South of France to a simple salad.

                        Any dish that has the classic ingredients of Provence, tomatoes, garlic, EVOO, olives,can benefit from a pinch or two.

                        1. k
                          KingsKetz Feb 14, 2007 03:16 AM

                          Thanks for all of the suggestions. I'm going to get it out on the counter and start using it!

                          1 Reply
                          1. re: KingsKetz
                            Tee Feb 14, 2007 05:17 AM

                            one more:
                            one of our family favorites - salmon rubbed with a little quality olive oil, lemon juice, HdP - grilled outside over charcoal.

                          2. m
                            marlie202 Feb 14, 2007 06:09 AM

                            use them as you would any herbs--very nice in stews,ratatouille,omelettes,soup,roasted chicken-

                            1. r
                              rexmo Feb 14, 2007 07:43 AM

                              In bread.

                              On bread, with olive oil, sea salt, black pepper, as an alternate to zataar.

                              Most recent use was on some fingerling potatoes, halved and grilled on panini press.

                              1. f
                                Fleur Feb 14, 2007 12:41 PM

                                I would add this caveat: No matter how wonderful Herbes de Provence is as a seasoning, if you use it on everything, all your dishes will taste the same.

                                2 Replies
                                1. re: Fleur
                                  marlie202 Feb 15, 2007 08:10 AM

                                  chicken and fish taste different no matter what you use--when I stopped using these wonderful herbs-I ran out-I found the recipes lacking something--the delightful herbs-

                                  1. re: Fleur
                                    JudyK480 Sep 2, 2010 02:25 PM

                                    Good point!

                                  2. t
                                    thursday Feb 14, 2007 01:32 PM

                                    Herbed butter--mix some HdP with good quality butter, a little garlic powder, and a little salt. It keeps in the fridge as long as regular butter would and is great for crusty bread, to rub into any meat before you roast it, to toss with veggies just before serving...

                                    Also, roast lamb is particularly good with HdP. Make a few shallow cuts with a sharp knife into a leg of lamb and hide large chunks of fresh garlic within them. Then rub the whole roast with HdP, salt and pepper and put in the oven. Fantastic!

                                    1. QueenB Feb 14, 2007 01:47 PM

                                      I use it on sauteed mushrooms.

                                      1. Amuse Bouches Feb 15, 2007 11:45 AM

                                        I use HdP in pretty much anything I would use dried herbs in. It's my default herbal application. Roast chicken, pork tenderloin, scrambled eggs, steak, vegetable soup, cooked vegetables, chicken salad ...

                                        1. chef chicklet Feb 15, 2007 12:08 PM

                                          Like most of the others, once I discovered what a wonderful extra it added to my dishes, I began to use it all the time. I love to use it mostly in my beans though, Since I cook my dried beans in a crockpot, I will omit the bay leaves because they aren't meant to endure that length of cooking time ( I don't think) and I cover the entire top of the pot with the herbs de provence. Another dish I use it is for chicken and dumplings, it gives it a wonderful french country taste!

                                          1. chef chicklet Feb 15, 2007 02:19 PM

                                            Oh almost forgot, one night I made cheddar herb de provence savory scones.... Pretty doggone good....

                                            2 Replies
                                            1. re: chef chicklet
                                              lollya Mar 1, 2007 07:35 AM

                                              YUM! Is there a special recipe you use?

                                              1. re: lollya
                                                chef chicklet Mar 4, 2007 10:34 AM

                                                Nope just my own scone recipe and make it savory. They are very good, well so we thought anyhow. Will share if you want it. This is the scone recipe that I sorta snagged from Wente Vineyard it was orginally a shortbread cookie recipe. Realizing when I began to make them that something was terribly wrong with the proportions for the ingredients, I had to then make it my own. I don't know what happened on their end they said they were happy to share their recipe for cranberry and pecan shortbread.

                                                I changed it for scones, and like I said, working on it about a year. I have the best recipe for Bing Cherry Pecan Scones. And from this recipe came the Rosemary Scone and from that the Cheddar Herbs de Provence Scone..... or the Spinach and Bacon White Cheddar Scone...... I even made a stuffed Scone with Raspberry Fig Jam with cinnamon sugar kiss. Crazy fun.

                                            2. y
                                              YumTum Feb 15, 2007 07:19 PM

                                              Sprinkle on french fries- very tasty

                                              1. puppymomma Feb 16, 2007 07:23 AM

                                                I've sprinkled it on roasted butternut squash and onions (before roasting them) and it's so good. It smells so good that I used to cook up a batch whenever someone was coming to see my house when it was for sale.

                                                1. j
                                                  jcanncuk Feb 16, 2007 07:27 AM

                                                  Get yourself a good bagel, top with good cream cheese, sprinkle on the herbs de provence and eat with fresh cukes and tomatoes. One of my favourite lunches.

                                                  As with many others, I often sprinkle it into whatever I'm cooking - fish braised in tomatoes (Mediterranean style), chicken dishes, scrambled eggs.....

                                                  1. j
                                                    Jcteut Feb 28, 2007 08:53 AM

                                                    When I am at work (I work in my boss's home) and he is cooking with Herbs de Province, the aroma is intoxicating and almost beg to stay for dinner. I bought my own and followed the recipe on the bottle:

                                                    Marinate boned chicken breasts for one hour in 1/2 cup olive oil, juice from one lemon and 2T Herbs de Province. After the hour, heat 1/2 of the marinade in a frying pan, add the chicken. Cook until thoroughly done.

                                                    It was so simple and my daughter was checking the herb bottle to make sure I didn't use too much of the herbs. She loved it that much. My boss does the roasting which makes the whole house smell wonderful, but this recipe was so easy. The lemon flavor gave it another dimension. We loved it!

                                                    1. v
                                                      vanillagrrl Feb 28, 2007 09:46 AM

                                                      One of my favorite things to make in the summer is roasted red bell peppers. I seed, peel, and chop the roasted peppers. Then I cook them slowly with olive oil and minced shallots (garlic is optional) into a sort of marmalade, seasoned with herbes de Provence. I crumble some in early in the cooking process, and then crush and add some during the last few minutes of cooking (after 45 minutes or so -- you really want the shallots and peppers to caramelize). It's a great spread for crackers or toasted baguette slices.

                                                      1. eLizard Mar 1, 2007 08:24 AM

                                                        peter reinhart has an herbed focaccia in the bread bakers apprentice. you can use a third of cup of the herbs inmaking the herb oil. absolutely delicious.

                                                        1. bluesman13 Mar 1, 2007 09:13 AM

                                                          I had never used herbes de provence until I saw this recipe on Julia Childs show from Gordon Hammersley:

                                                          On the link select, "Roast Chicken with garlic and lemon" (it's a video)

                                                          1. perk Mar 4, 2007 05:09 PM

                                                            I agree with the roasted veggies and potatoes and chicken ideas. I also use it on grilled artichokes. Yum!

                                                            1. Chocolatechipkt Mar 5, 2007 08:46 AM

                                                              I use it in beef stew ... roast chicken ... roast pork ...

                                                              1. t
                                                                teetytot Nov 24, 2008 08:15 AM

                                                                also very good on pizza and on slices on French bread rubbed with garlic and olive oil and then toasted.

                                                                1. j
                                                                  jarona Nov 24, 2008 08:46 AM

                                                                  I use HDP on chicken, quail, duck breasts, pork. In addition, I always put them in my spice mill to grind 'em to an almost powderlike consistency. Don't like chunks of herbs in my teeth!

                                                                  1. g
                                                                    gourmanda Nov 24, 2008 10:17 AM

                                                                    I use it in a paste w/ shallots and olive oil and spread it under the skin of the turkey breast before roasting.

                                                                    Also great on fish and vegetables.

                                                                    1. m
                                                                      mudhudhud Nov 24, 2008 03:36 PM

                                                                      I have a great recipe for lima beans with herbs de provence made in the slow cooker...so good, so easy and it completely transforms the lowly lima bean.

                                                                      1. sunshine842 May 11, 2011 02:10 AM

                                                                        Just be careful if it has lavender in it -- I find the lavender has a tendency to overwhelm everything else, resulting in the "everything tastes the same" sentiment expressed upthread.

                                                                        Interesting factoid: if you buy HdP in a French supermarket, it will not have lavender in it.

                                                                        6 Replies
                                                                        1. re: sunshine842
                                                                          magiesmom May 11, 2011 07:06 AM

                                                                          I like it so much better without lavender which tastes like soap to me.

                                                                          1. re: magiesmom
                                                                            sunshine842 May 11, 2011 01:04 PM

                                                                            Thank you.

                                                                            I love, love, love the SMELL of lavender. Not so much the taste.

                                                                            (The lady at Penzey's wasn't very happy with me last August -- my SIL told her I live in France, and she asked what I thought of their HdP blend. She was pretty miffed when I told her that the French don't put lavender in their HdP.)

                                                                            I find that the French blend is much more subtle and much more enjoyable on a wider variety of things because the lavender doesn't duke it out with the rest of the meal.

                                                                            1. re: sunshine842
                                                                              LindaWhit May 11, 2011 01:18 PM

                                                                              I've read this renewed sub-thread with interest. I find the amount of lavender in the Penzey's Herbs de Provence to be so minimal it doesn't bother me at all. And I'm one where cilantro tastes like soap to me, so you'd think I'd have the same aversion to lavender, but I don't.

                                                                              1. re: sunshine842
                                                                                artychokeasana May 13, 2011 07:38 AM

                                                                                One man gathers what another man spills...I love to use lavender on beef, chicken and veal-but really only if it comes directly from the garden. But can see how it might taste soapy to some.

                                                                                I disagree about the basic components of HDP though-I read the threads below and thought that HDP did contain lavender0but a spin around the internets this AM taught me that it has many variations -and that those variations change from house to house and/or cook to cook. Interesting stuff.

                                                                                1. re: artychokeasana
                                                                                  sunshine842 May 13, 2011 08:38 AM

                                                                                  the link I posted upthread is the definition adopted by the Label Rouge, which is a French designation given to those things that in some manner represent the way something ought to be. If that's what the folks who invented it say it consists of, that's pretty much all I need to know.

                                                                                  (that and the fact that a glance at the label of any bottle labeled as such in France will turn up the same ingredients...unless it's being sold in a tourist-oriented shop, in which case it will contain lavender.)

                                                                                  1. re: sunshine842
                                                                                    artychokeasana May 13, 2011 11:44 AM

                                                                                    I definitely looked at your link-it's mostly what spurred my roam around the internets. The Label Rouge's history is interesting. But it starts in 1960-and lots of the references I found to HDP are priorto that. I think that maybe in this historic moment HDP is defined in France as you define it (which makes all kinds of sense since you live there now) but that historically there were variations. That's as it is with most food stuffs...

                                                                          2. Gio May 11, 2011 04:51 AM

                                                                            Fun to read this old thread again. Lately I've been using Herbes de Provence to dry tomatoes in the oven. Slice the tomatoes in half, sprinkle with EVOO/ HdP/S & P and a little sugar. Roast in a 250F oven 3 or 4 hours. Pack into a glass jar, drizzle a bit more oil over and store in the fridge...or use immediately.

                                                                            1. m
                                                                              mexivilla May 12, 2011 05:32 AM

                                                                              Canadian Food Network show French Cooking at Home Laura Calder puts Herbes de Provence on just about everything. But in a show last week she even put it on popcorn!

                                                                              1. r
                                                                                rjbh20 May 12, 2011 09:16 AM

                                                                                Use as a rub for prime rib, with coarse salt & black pepper. Even better if you roast it outside with a litte (not too much) wood smoke.

                                                                                1. k
                                                                                  Klunco May 12, 2011 10:15 AM

                                                                                  In addition to the above ideas you can make HdP cordial for mixing into homemade lemonade or with soda water for a simple soda. It also can be used in cocktails. You could also infuse HdP in vodka for an interesting spirit.

                                                                                  Best uses though: Roast chicken, fish, potatoes, eggs, ratatouille, lamb, quiche, tomatoes provencal.

                                                                                  1. artychokeasana May 12, 2011 11:09 AM

                                                                                    Savory french toast-just put lots of herbe de provence in the batter-simple and delicious-it's not bad with a little ham on top either!

                                                                                    1. tazia May 12, 2011 05:51 PM

                                                                                      I made pan-fried radishes to go on top of some risotto tonight and threw some herbs de provence into the breading mix. It was awesome.

                                                                                      3 Replies
                                                                                      1. re: tazia
                                                                                        artychokeasana May 13, 2011 07:25 AM

                                                                                        That sound incredibly delicious. Did you slice, bread and then fry? What type of risotto did you make?

                                                                                        1. re: artychokeasana
                                                                                          tazia May 13, 2011 07:32 AM

                                                                                          Slice, toss in flour, then toss in eggs, then toss in breading. I use panko + herbs + parm + S&P. Then pan fried them in olive oil on med heat.

                                                                                          Then went on top of a broccoli rabe risotto. It turned out quite delicious.

                                                                                          1. re: tazia
                                                                                            artychokeasana May 13, 2011 07:41 AM

                                                                                            thank you! I may just steal your recipe wholesale!

                                                                                      2. r
                                                                                        random amblings May 12, 2011 06:23 PM

                                                                                        My friend got WS HoP and after trying it, passed it along to me, since I really like the stuff. To my amazement, there was a ton of seeds in it... the shape of caraway seeds...not certain what it was but it made the blend taste bogus. So before we quibble about lavender, yea or nay, this should be borne in mind.

                                                                                        8 Replies
                                                                                        1. re: random amblings
                                                                                          LindaWhit May 12, 2011 07:25 PM

                                                                                          That is probably fennel seeds. Per Wikipedia: "The standard mixture typically contains savory, fennel, basil, thyme flowers, rosemary, bay leaf, chervil, tarragon, marjoram, and mint. The proportions vary by manufacturer. Thyme usually dominates the taste produced by the herb mixture. Lavender is only added in American mixes but is not used in French traditional mixes."

                                                                                          1. re: LindaWhit
                                                                                            sunshine842 May 13, 2011 02:22 AM

                                                                                            erk Too much stuff!

                                                                                            Thyme, rosemary, savory, oregano, and basil.

                                                                                            That's all.


                                                                                            1. re: sunshine842
                                                                                              LindaWhit May 13, 2011 06:01 AM

                                                                                              I agree - there was definitely a LOT of "extras" in that list. I've *never* heard of tarragon or mint being in HdP, but it was the first definition I came upon last night, and it did list the fennel seeds. I've often seen fennel seeds listed in HdP.

                                                                                              And you're showing the French version; obviously the American version varies, as you noted above. :-) I actually like it with a bit of fennel and lavender. YMMV.

                                                                                              1. re: LindaWhit
                                                                                                sunshine842 May 13, 2011 06:49 AM

                                                                                                and then we enter the eternal circle of hell in which it might be a very good blend with fennel (and all that other stuff) and all of those herbs might be grown in Provence, but that doesn't make it Herbes de Provence.

                                                                                                1. re: sunshine842
                                                                                                  DPGood May 13, 2011 07:16 AM

                                                                                                  Got that right. This is getting old.

                                                                                                  1. re: sunshine842
                                                                                                    LindaWhit May 13, 2011 07:46 AM

                                                                                                    ::::Sigh:::: It doesn't make it the Herbs de Provence *you* prefer. There are still two versions.

                                                                                                    American Herbs de Provence often contains lavender and/or fennel. The French version does not. I use American Herbs de Provence and like it. It's still Herbs de Provence. Just not what you like.

                                                                                                    1. re: LindaWhit
                                                                                                      sunshine842 May 13, 2011 08:40 AM

                                                                                                      and the descent begins.

                                                                                                      1. re: sunshine842
                                                                                                        LindaWhit May 13, 2011 09:02 AM

                                                                                                        We will just have to agree to disagree on the ingredients, sunshine.

                                                                                          2. jmckee May 13, 2011 07:30 AM

                                                                                            Make a buttered or non-stick foil packet of thinly sliced onions, potatoes, mushrooms, and fish filet (not steak). Sprinkle with the herbs. dot with butter and add a splash of white wine or dry white vermouth. Seal. Bake at about 400. Enjoy.

                                                                                            1 Reply
                                                                                            1. re: jmckee
                                                                                              LIMary May 13, 2011 03:54 PM

                                                                                              Linda Whit, I'm so glad you explained that the American and French versions are different. I have been using the version with Lavender for my turkey each Thanksgiving and when I was in Provence last year visiting our friend. I asked which one has the lavender? She was very surprised and was emphatic that Herbs de Provence does not have lavender. She said you have to buy it separately. I figured she would know so I actually started to doubt myself. When I came back home to New York sure enough my bottle had lavender in it..

                                                                                              To answer the original question, I use Herbs de Provence on roast turkey, chickens and stews.

                                                                                            2. a
                                                                                              allyincali1 Mar 16, 2014 01:38 PM

                                                                                              I use it fish with a little olive oil, roasted pork tenderloin, roasted chicken, roasted potatoes.

                                                                                              My favorite is to rub some olive oil on pork tenderloin, sprinkle some hers de provence. Wrap the pork tenderloin in slices of prosciutto. Tie with cooking twine. Throw it on the grill. It's delicious and moist.

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