I get my bouquet garni (or bouquets garnis) for free: I make them the traditional way, using herbs from my garden. They may look like faddy, fiddly little bundles to make, but they really aren’t. I like them better than those dried up old teabag things you buy in the shops, and they save money. Why people still buy those teabags, I don’t know.
Right now I seem to be tossing bouquet garni bundles around left, right and centre: bechamel sauces, stews in the slow cooker, soups, you name it…
As you can see, this bouquet garni includes thyme, rosemary, parsley and bay leaf. I’ve seen bouquet garni recipes online that include squashing the sprigs of herbs into the hollow of a celery stalk or feeding them into a piece of leek, but life’s too short. I used to tie the bouquet garni herbs into a little muslin bag, but now I don’t do that either. Instead I put a bay leaf on the top, a bay leaf on the bottom, knot the bundle tightly and chuck it into the pot.
One cheat: my little bay tree is NOT happy at the moment, so I’m using bay leaves that I keep in an airtight container in the freezer. If anyone has any bay tree resuscitation tips, I am all ears! I know they don’t like lots of water; sadly, North Yorkshire isn’t known for its Mediterranean climate.