I first read about borage in a Medieval cookbook. It is listed as a seasonal option for a ravioli filling. Of course I was curious. Later, when I read that the lightly cucumber flavored leaves and flowers were supposed to be great mood-boosters, I bought a seed packet. I think I read somewhere that they help with "feminine issues", but I was never able to find that reference again. They're pretty, and they grow year round in mild climates. That's convincing enough for me.
True to its name as bee plant, it is always busy with honeybees.
This sandwich is toasted sourdough bread, mayo, sautéed borage leaves, leftover chicken breast, pickled red onion, and pickle juice over the top. It was very good, but I think it would have made an even better quesadilla. The leaves didn't cook down much the way spinach does, and it still felt a little furry, but not prickly anymore. I can't say whether or not it boosted my mood, but a good sandwich always lifts my spirits.
I read that the flower is beautiful frozen into ice cubes, and it kept my five year old busy for a half hour. I wasn't too concerned with the results.
As you can see, next time I should take the furry part off of the flowers before freezing them into ice cubes. Still, the result was very pretty and I could see floating borage flower ice cubes in a tall glass of lemonade this summer.
I hear that a tea made by steeping the leaves for five to ten minutes in boiling water is supposed to help with the blues, but it is also supposedly extremely bitter. I didn't feel like suffering through the experiment, but thankfully there are other ways to cope with a downcast spirit. If you try it let me know.
I don't think borage is going to be the next big thing, and maybe in the future I will devote a little less space to it, but it is pretty to look at. It's a good companion plant for tomatoes, and the bees love it. Grow it for the bees.
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