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Fresh Chervil


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Would settle for dried as last resort

Can't seem to find any..

This isn't the greatest of help, but this question was asked on the Washington Post "Free Range Chat" on Aug 5, 2015:


Q: Chervil
Do you know where I can buy fresh chervil? I have been searching for it to no avail. I shop at the Dupont Fresh Farm Market year round and can find just about every other herb right now, but cannot find chervil. I tried Wegman's and Whole Foods also and neither one has it. It is in a lot of French recipes and adds a delicious flavor to foods. What do you recommend ? Thanks!
A: Bonnie Benwick
I love chervil, too, and agree it's hard to find around DC. You might want to buy a plant and grow your own in a pot (even I can't kill it). For a substitute, the closest thing might be a mix of 3 parts finely chopped flat-leaf parsley to 1 part finely chopped tarragon.
And on Jul 20, 2012:
Call Rob Weland at Garrison this afternoon around 3 PM (he might not be in yet) - introduce yourself as follows: "Rob, I'm a friend of Don Rockwell, and he suggested that I call you - I have a problem, and was hoping you could help me" (he'll help you), and make it a quick conversation - he'll be getting ready for dinner service, so try to stay on the phone for less than one minute.
"Chervil: Qu'est-ce que c'est?" by Sally G. Miller on davesgarden.com
In our Farms and Farmers Markets forum, go to the Late Spring (May 21 - June 20) thread, and you'll find fresh chervil mentioned here.
You can also find it mentioned in the Bloomingdale Farmers Market thread here and here.
In the Arlington Market thread here.
It's also mentioned at least once in the Home Gardens thread (this thread is 14-pages long, and I didn't want to go through and search for every post).
It appears to be a late-Spring herb, so I'm afraid you might be out of luck if you need it on short notice - at this point, your best bet is to call Rob.
Do any of our members grow their own chervil, and have any to spare?
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You're probably not going to find it fresh at this time of year, though, searching the dinner thread, I see someone was able to get it in September of a previous year.  That could have been homegrown, though.

Penzey's has it dried, so that's probably your best bet.  More mass market spice companies (e.g., McCornick or Spice Island) might have it too, but Penzey's would probably be freshest.

If the weather cooperates sufficiently, I'll check at Gardener's Gourmet later.  I can't recall if they've had it recently, but I know they have it sometimes.  They're at Eastern Market today and Dupont tomorrow, so I can ask if they might have some tomorrow.  It's a long shot, but I'm usually at that stand on Saturdays, so it's no problem to ask.

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Thanks for the thoughtful response. It is for a dish I make usually around thanksgiving.

I hoped there was some market or purveyor who carried it. I used to be able to get it at wegmans but no longer.

Can always grow a small pot by then. Probably in a year or two it will become trendy and all the rage and be available all over. 😀

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Gardener's Gourmet didn't have it.  They did have sorrel, and I think that's what I was thinking of. I also checked both produce vendors inside with no luck (though one did have it dried.)   Funny enough, but I was looking over a recipe I plan to make soon, and it turns out to call for fresh chervil.  That says to use flat leaf parsley as a substitute if chervil is unavailable.

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I don't think it dries well at all. I think carrot top actually gets closer to the flavor than parsley, maybe with a bit of ground anise. Nothing really replace it for prettiness of leaves, though.

If you have the time and a small patch of soil, it is easy to grow. Sow some seeds now, keep the ground moist with daily watering until the sprout emerged, and the rest is easy. It is a cool season biannual the will stay alive over winter and take off in the spring. If you let some go to seed, it will come back readily.

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