When it comes to getting the herb mix right some recipes can seem to be very hung up on using that one ingredient that we are all a bit unsure of. For some it is the confusing difference between a sachet d’epices and a bouquet garni. We hope to help your out with this one as it can seem strict, when in fact you can have freedom to add flavor easily.
A Sachet D epices contains dried thyme, bay leaves and peppercorns. The importance is that peppercorns are not a herb, but a spice and this adds the distinctions between the two. A bouquet garni can be fresh or dried but contains three main ingredients; Parsley, Thyme and Bay Leaves.
It is important to note that both the bouquet garni and the sachet d’epices can be mixed up with other herbs. You should be able to use them to great effect.
What Is A Sachet D’epices?
Sachet d epices pronounced Sa-Shay Day Pees are a sachet filled with dried herbs and spices. This will then be added to cooking without you needing to worry about the effect on texture, or visual appeal. Dried thyme and bay leaves have a slightly different taste profile than the fresh variety and this can enhance a dish further.
You can add a number of different herbs and spices to the basic mix of Thyme, Bay leaves and Peppercorns.
It all depends on the taste you are hoping to develop and what dish you are adding it to. So I am going to argue that as long as you have dried herbs at home you can make your own sachet d’epices without needing to be perfect!
How To Make A Sachet D’epices
- Choose your herb and spice mix. The classic mix of dried thyme, dried bay leaves and peppercorns is perfect for your sachet d’epices.
- Cut two squares of cheesecloth, large enough to take your herb and spice mix. This will form your sachet d’epices, however you can also purchase Cotton Muslin Bags if you don’t want to make your own.
- Pop about 2 tablespoons of the mix into the centre of the cheesecloth and pull it together to form a packet or pouch of dried herbs and spices.
- Use kitchen twine to tie around and hold it all together.
- Put into your cooking and leave to steep in the dish.
- This would be the same method for creating a bouquet garni with dried herbs. The difference is the addition of spices and this is what makes a sachet d’epices.
- Once the flavor has developed remove your sachet d’epices and discard. The dish will not have any sharp dried herbs and spices or be discolored by wilting herbs.
When you make a bouquet garni you will tie the fresh herbs together with kitchen twine. You use it in the same way as a sachet d’epices.
Do You Need A Sachet D’epices Or A Bouquet Garni
If you are following the recipe verbatim you may think that you need one or the other, however as a bouquet garni contains parsley, thyme and bay leaves and the recipe may also need ground pepper later on, then I would suggest you have pretty much made a sachet d’epices.
DO not be overly worried about getting the herbs just right, if your family prefer rosemary to bay leaves then go for that. The main purpose of the sachet or the bouquet is to stop the dish containing woody herbs or sharp spices.
Ge creative. Let your imagination go wild, from pink peppercorns to whole cloves. Use the combination that you want to eat with each dish!
You may also like to look at our article on Herbes De Provence Vs Italian Seasoning!