A Gift from the Bay Tree

Bay leaves are good in more than just soups and braised meat dishes; they can also enliven vegetables and even drinks.

Beans and lentils are nice when cooked with a bay leaf or two, says nofunlatte, while sueatmo puts bay leaves under the skin of a chicken before roasting.

“Simple boiled potatoes with sautéed leeks are elevated to something higher when a bay leaf’s added to the boiling water,” says shaogo. Or turn on the oven: This recipe for potatoes roasted with olive oil uses 40 bay leaves. “It’s lovely!” says Ima Wurdibitsch.

dumpycactus adds bay leaves to chai, and lucygoosey likes bay leaf–infused simple syrup in cocktails, lemonade, and stirred into Greek yogurt. She uses five or more fresh leaves or two to three dried to infuse syrup, saying it gets strong fast.

CHOW’s Virgin Bramble includes bay leaf and juniper berry syrup.

Board Link: Bay leaves--anything interesting you use them for, besides meat dishes and…

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