Love for Food + Tree

Parsley, Sage, Rosemary and Pine... Choosing a Christmas tree

The holiday season is upon us! I've been collecting cookie recipes, noting gift ideas, and bookmarking present wrapping inspiration. We don't have our tree or any decorations up yet at my home - those festivities are planned for this weekend, the only free weekend my fiance and I have between now and Christmas... it will be a holiday preparation extravaganza! Replete with hot chocolate, a walk by the White House Christmas tree, and a holiday music dance party with our lab Winston.

For the last few years we've used a small artificial tree but the base of it broke and it didn't make it into the pod for our cross-country move last summer. After a little research into what's a better choice for the environment – a fake tree or a real tree, I wonder why I didn't realize before how ungreen a fake tree is, since it's made of mostly non-biodegradable material and is often manufactured in China. Christmas tree farms actually provide good use for land with soil that's insufficient for most crops but good for growing hardy evergreens, saving that land from becoming another shopping center.

So this year, I'm thinking that a small, live tree would be nice, like the ones I saw at Whole Foods this week – trees from a family run farm which plants two more trees for each tree cut. If you live in the DC area, here's a Guide to Local Christmas Tree Farms from Washingtonian magazine. This is a great site to look up local information on how to recycle your tree after the holidays. If you're a environmental superstar and you'd like to plant your tree, here's a great how-to video with the essential steps. It's a nice way to remember past Christmases. Another alternative to a traditional tree, and a great choice for apartment dwellers with little space, is a homemade evergreen vase.

On a culinary note... the tree pictured above is a 16" rosemary tree that's sitting on my dining table. This week I made roasted potatoes with a few fresh cut sprigs. There is a lot you can do with this fragrant herb. Customarily, rosemary is paired with potatoes, chicken and pork, but it has surprising potential in dishes like these from the lovely 101 Cookbooks blog.

Chocolate, Christmas, Food for Conversation, Holiday, potato, Recipe, Rosemary, sea food, and more:

Parsley, Sage, Rosemary and Pine... Choosing a Christmas tree + Tree