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Aug 9, 2007 10:41 AM

Sage: not just for turkeys?

My mother plants sage as her walkway border, because it's pretty, smells good, and can take a beating. But in the fall, she just lets it freeze to death, because she's not sure what to do with it. What do you do with bushels of sage, besides dry a little for Thanksgiving?

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  1. I like to mix it with ground pork or as a rub for just about any cut of pork.

    1. Sage leaves can be quickly fried in hot oil, then drained and served on top of gnocchi. My brother made a butternut squash lasagna where the bechemel was infused with sage or rosemary. Sage is very good as a seasoning for cannelini beans, in brown butter sauce over pasta, whole leaves stuffed inside roasting chicken, mixed into a compound butter to season and baste roasting poultry or pork.

      4 Replies
      1. re: WCchopper

        Yum! When it's fried to a light crisp I can eat the leaves like potato chips.

        1. re: WCchopper

          Continuing with the butternut squash idea- I make a side dish with butternut- (large cubes, tossed in olive oil, roast), toasted hazelnuts and tossed at the end with sage butter (lots f torm sage melted with butter) and plenty of salt. This also works with pumpkin.

          1. re: cheesemonger

            That sounds like the genesis of a great soup! Maybe a little wedge of St Andre in the bottom of the bowl, puree' the pumpkin or squash, add sage infused cream, top with the hazelnuts........mmmmmm........

            1. re: WCchopper

              Actually my favorite butternut squash soup recipe has sage and it's even easier...I adapted it (from memory) from a Gourmet recipe.
              Saute chopped onions and garlic in a little bit of oil/butter. When nearly done, add chopped fresh sage. Add cubed squash and water (and/or chicken or vegetable stock), and some salt & pepper and a bay leaf). Cook until tender, blend (I use an immersion blender) and finish with some fresh grated parmesean. Simple, but delicious. I like it better than any richer cream-based soup.

        2. I also love sage with pork. Toss some chopped sage with panko crumbs and parmesan and you have a fantastic coating for pork chops. In combination with parsley, thyme, oregano, rosemary and lemon, it also makes a great filling for porchetta.

          1. I agree with the pork reommendations, also works great in a white bean gratin

            2 Replies
            1. re: martin1026

              white bean gratin sounds great! how do you make this dish? i'm always trying to think of what else to do with beans to make my toddler eat them.

              1. re: sogi

                I got the receipe from the gourmet cookbook, so I am trying to recall it off the top of my head. Here goes:
                Soak 1lb white beans (I use Great Northern) in cold water over night in the fridge.
                Simmer for a couple of hours, until tender, with some aromatics (a carrot, celery stick, and couple of cloves of garlic).
                When tender, drain beans, be sure to save cooking liquid
                Combine about 1 cup of beans and some cooking liquid (half cup seems right), couple of tablespoons of white wine vinegar, and a couple of table spoons of olive oil in a blender and puree.
                Combine beans and puree in a oven proof baking dish.
                Top with a mixture of 4 oz. chees and 1 cup of bread crumbs and bake, uncovered, in a 350 degree oven for about half an hour.

                I realize now that I don't recall any sage in this dish (although I don't have the recipe in front of me), but next time I'm going to add some when I combine all the beans in the baking dish. You could also toss in some cooked cut-up sausage before baking to make a complete dish.

                This goes great with grilled leg of lamb

            2. Cut kernels off ears of corn. Sautee diced onion in butter; when soft add corn, salt, and pepper. After a couple of minutes add a good amount of chopped fresh sage. That's it.

              1 Reply
              1. re: pikawicca

                I make a similar dish with corn and red bell peppers, lots of sage, plus scallops, stir fried.