What’s in Season: Chives

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By The Paula Deen Test Kitchen

Start thinking of your favorite dips, soups, and seafood dishes, because it’s the beginning of chive season again! 

This delicate herb adds a zesty finish to almost anything savory, especially potatoes and other vegetables, shellfish, pork, and eggs.  Chives also spruce up baked goodies like scones, quiches, and cheesy biscuits!

“All”-ium in the Family
Like their scallion cousins in the Allium family, chives offer a more subtle onion flavor but still plenty of nutrients.  Chives are of Mediterranean origin and are an excellent candidate for home growing; they’re highly perishable once cut, but tolerant of a range of conditions and helpful in keeping insects out of the garden. 

Choosing and Storing
We usually eat and buy only the leaves, but chives have edible, pinkish-purple or white flowers at their tops.  Look for blades that are vibrant green and hold their tubular shape, avoiding bunches that are flattened, moistened, or yellowed.  Keep them in the refrigerator for up to 3 days, and don’t wash them until you are going to use them.  Treat them gently – many prefer to snip them with scissors.  If you opt for your kitchen knife, make sure it’s sharp.

Punch it up with Chives
Chives are almost always added at the end of the recipe, as a raw garnish or as a finishing ingredient.  The only times you will really cook them are in savory baking, an occasional filling, or in an herb bouquet for a stock.  A classic American pairing of chives is potatoes (we also like them with sweet potatoes), followed closely by eggs (throw them into an omelet or other egg preparations).  They are often featured in mayonnaise-based sauces to accompany seafood like crab and shrimp. Another old standard is combining them with parsley to garnish pasta dishes, like our Lemon Linguine or macaroni and cheese.


Need more ideas? Here are some of some of our favorite recipes with chives:

Fried Green Tomatoes with Vidalia Onion Relish
A reliable Southern smash hit with special sauce.

Shrimp Dip
An oniony, creamy, app served with hot pepper jelly on toast points.

Prosciutto-Stuffed Mushrooms
Minced into a cream cheese filling.

Jumbo Lump Crab Cake Sandwich
Folded into a homemade roasted tomato remoulade for a delicious sauce!

Farmers Pork Chops
Served with signature white sauce.

Fried Bacon Mashed Potatoes
The whole nine – in a whole wheat country bread bowl, or for a lighter option, try:

Mashed Cauliflower
Bias-cut to garnish this elegant, simple, and nutritious side.

Other fun things you can do with chives:
-Dehydrate them.
-Add them to green sauces and dips to preserve color and brightness – an old food styling trick…
-Try chive blossoms as garnish for salads or eggs, or deep-fried!

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Paula Deen
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hi! wink i was wondering if you could share the recipe for the chiken/grape salad-the one that is pictured on the croissant above? thanks! wink sandra
Sandra Neuheimer-Huller in Chicken Salad: A Southern Staple on April 19, 2014 at 10:37 am

Where do I buy these magazines
in A Basketful of Traditions on April 19, 2014 at 8:22 am

I WISH I COULD COOK. COULD I COME WORK FOR JUST ROOM AND BOARD AT YOUR NEW RESTURAUNT IN PIGEON FORGE FOR THE SUMMER? I WENT TO COLLEGE NOT FAR FROM THERE - HIWASSEE COLLEGE. YOU WOULDN'T HAVE TO PAY ME, I WOULD WORK FOR FREE JUST FOR THE EXPERIENCE. TAMMY LEVAN 19 SPENCER WAY KINGS PARK, NY 11754 HAPPY EASTER! CHRIST IS RISEN!
TAMMY L LEVAN in A Basketful of Traditions on April 19, 2014 at 4:31 am

Hi Bubbles, You have some great tips. Can't wait to read your other blogs! Please give Aunt Peggy a big hug from me and here is one for you! (((HUGS))) See you in May!
Jaci Pardun in 10 Quick Household Tips on April 18, 2014 at 11:05 pm

Paula, I am glad to know that I am not the only person who makes Easter Baskets for their adult children and mail them across the United States. My Daughter lives in Long Beach, CA and I not only sent her a basket but her husband and my granddaughter Reese. We also buy special Russel Stover Bunnies for each child too. My husband has the list in his phone... Sara .. Cookies 'n Crème.... Sidney and Stephen.. Peanut Butter Etc. It one of my favorite things to do for my kids.. no matter how old they get. And passing it along to my Grandchildren. It's even more special to me knowing we share a family tradition. Blessings and Happy Easter!!
Sharon Cason-Card in A Basketful of Traditions on April 18, 2014 at 11:03 pm