Nasturtium Butter…..

My pre-breakfast morning walk is a push for power; for a fast-paced, heart-pumping, energizing surge where battling against the wind and weather helps me to reclaim some of the adrenalin driven lifestyle I once had. Yes, I rise when the bats are still following their flight paths home to roost and with a torch strapped to my wrist I meet the day, head-on with music streaming into my unconscious through the headphones of my iPod. I don’t do gentle on this walk, I choose rousing, rhythmic music by the Chemical Brothers, oh, and I walk with David Bowie a lot.

Except today, my iPod won’t work. No sound will come out, nothing. Baffled for a moment as to how I will set my pace without the aid of “Hey girl, hey boy” I try to sing the music in my head. But gradually something else takes over, as my creativity kicks in and shifts and tumbles and multiplies and shifts again as idea after idea comes into my mind. By the time I get home my virtual world has gone into overdrive. In my head I have made a Nasturtium butter, launched a club, designed aprons, pickled nasturtium seeds, made jam, harvested carrots, styled some photos, created a guest list for my Swedish style Little Christmas Eve Party……. the list goes on and on. Trust me; no one day will ever be long enough to achieve all these things. So, here is the question; is being creative a blessing or a curse? Yes, I get lots of things done each day, but there are always so, so many things which remain undone.

One of the lovely things  I did get to do was the Nasturtium Butter, it’s quick and easy to make and can be frozen so that you can slice some off when you want to toss some onto some pasta or when you are pan frying  chicken. I use an Alice Waters recipe and you can’t really do any better than that, can you? The flavour is subtle, but you get to harvest and preserve the colour and mildly peppery flavour of one of the most lovely, gem-like, prolifically flowering plants; the Nasturtium. The mild Autumn here means that there are still flowers left to pick. Please don’t let them go to waste.



2 teaspoon chopped fresh Thyme

2 teaspoon chopped fresh Italian Parsley

2 Shallots

18-20 Nasturtiums

4 tablespoons unsalted butter- soft


  1. Chop all the herbs very fine. Dice the shallots very small.
  2. Separate the Nasturtiums from the stems ( checking for insects as you go). Chop the flowers
  3. Blend butter, herbs and shallot and season with salt and pepper.
  4. Roll the butter into a sausage shape between some tin foil and place in the freezer.



30 thoughts on “Nasturtium Butter…..

    • Life is such a tricky balance at the best of times…but on crutches, it is impossible! I don’t have a stand there this year, but hope to pop down. Thanks so much for your lovely message. Karen x x

  1. very funny story. I ask myself, too, if creativity is a blessing or a curse. Up to now I don’t really know the answer, but I think it’s more a blessing. Your recipe sounds really wonderful and looks fantastic. I’m enjoying the still warm weather, too, riding my bike. Give a little kiss to Josef, kind regards, my dear Karen, Mitza

    • I think you are right Mitza, on the whole. But I do sometimes wish that I could find my ‘off’ switch so that I could get some rest. The creativity drives me and sets such impossible tasks. I am old enough now to have learned how to pace myself….and yet I still am so driven and set such high standards for myself. I never say ‘that is good enough’, if I did I would feel that I have failed. Lovely to think of you cycling. Enjoy the warm weather while you can dear Mitza, for it will surely change soon. Although a friend of mine just returned from Prague and said how warm it was there! Kiss delivered to dear Josef. He just laps up all the affection you can send. Have a great day….Karen x

      • this seems to be a little female problem, too. We always ask ourselves if everything we do is good enough. I’m pretty sure that everything you do is really perfect and beautiful when I look at your blog and the photos from your house. It is really necessary that you pace yourself and relax a bit. Josef would be so happy to sit on your lap, being stroked, and he probably loves to see you reading a good book and listening to David Bowie etc. Have a great day, too, dear Karen, kind regards Mitza

      • You are so right Mitza. I am trying to teach myself to be kinder, slower and not to aim so high. Actually, growing older is doing the job for me! Because I do get tired now more quickly and I also know that Josef will not be with me forever, so I dedicate time to him each day. He is on mouse watching duty at the moment because one has come into the house! 🙂 Love to you Mitza

  2. You are always such an inspiration! I love your undaunted spirit that always rises above obstacles and determines to own the moment rather than succumb to disappointments. Hooray for inspiration to not only meet your challenge heard on but return to create such a lovely recipe! Have an awesome day!

    • After days and days of low cloud, mist and rain here on the moors, the sun has burst through and I can see the sky. And then, your lovely message came through! Life throws so many challenges our way, doesn’t it? But from a very young age I watched my elders changing in a negative way as things went wrong for them and I did not like what I saw. I believe that we should all try to put good out into the world. Surely then this will have a positive effect? I keep trying….:) Have a lovely day too! x

      • The saying don’t spit in the wind is one possible response to adversity but braving the wind makes us stronger, more optimistic, more relentless and resilient and successful as well as joyful. Philippians 4 : 13 says I can do everything God asks me to with the help of Christ who gives me the strength and power. And Philippians 2:13 says it is God who is at work in you both to will and to work for His good pleasure. Reminds me of the Christian runner in the movie Chariots of Fire. He said when he ran he felt the pleasure of God. God has packed in all of us His Divine spark of genius to create and conquer and speak order out of chaos and light out of darkness and fear. Press on sister! 😊

  3. Your posts are always so inspirational and creative, Karen! I love the recipe.It’s the first time I see it, and it sounds great! Have a beautiful autumn day, and I hope the weather is sunny and warm! xo

      • I must admit, that’s something I don’t miss about autumn: picking up fallen leaves. It’s a never ending job, and as soon as you’re done, is back to where it was before hahaha. Still, the colors are amazing! Glad to hear there is sunny. Here is also a beautiful day, so for sure I’ll try to spend it outside. Many hugs x

  4. That was a fun read. A motivated individual you are, Karen! And I gotta say, because I do not think I’ve ever mentioned it, but I really enjoy your writing. It sips like a good tea! Just easy to read, soothing to digest, and brilliantly articulated. What I’m saying is, you’re a right fine writer, and I love to read your work here. I do.

    Also, I think I know my next thing to plant now…Nasturtiums!


    • It is a fine day indeed when I get a comment from you. I just feel that little bit more chipper and happy…and I have a big SMILE 🙂 A compliment coming from you means a great deal because your writing is mighty fine too.
      Thank you so much for taking the time to write and for perhaps making a little space in your garden for some new, edible flowers.

  5. Your morning walk sounds like a wonderful way to start your day. I agree with the comments above that you are a wonderful writer. Your recipe for Natrisum Butter sounds delicious. It sounds delicious to use on Baked yams. Thanks for the wonderful cooking inspiration. I am looking forward to Holiday cooking.

  6. Beautiful! SO creative indeed!! I love eating nasturtiums, pods, flowers and all! But never would have thought to do anything else but pesto with them! Thank you for the beautiful inspiration! And I agree, sometimes it’s a cruse to bee so creative because it’s so easy to get down on ourselves because we don’t accomplish “all the things”! I seriously could live in a world where we had 36 hour days.

    • It’s helpful to know that I am not alone! Friends tell me to slow down and be kind to myself, but I just don’t feel good being lazy. I live each day as though it was the first…or last!
      I have never made a pesto with Nasturtiums……I am intrigued! x

  7. Nasturtium butter … nice…..embodies the peace of the country. I do beg you not to accuse creativity because it is that which saves our lives. Our minds tell us that this, that and other things must be done in order for us to be happy. Not true. Breathe deeply, consciously and enjoy the creative process. One thing created with full presence trumps ten things done on the fly. Creativity is God, universe in play. A beautiful day to you.

    • You are right Gretchen, of course you are. It is the mind which pushes me into over drive, not the creativity. During the dark winter days it really is true that my creativity is pulling me through. I have picked up some sewing which I started long ago. I am literally sewing a garden! So on days when I can not get out I now take huge comfort from doing this. It is life saving. I will feature it soon on my blog so that you can see all the little flowers. 🙂 I send you love and thanks for your friendship and wisdom x x

      • I look forward to seeing your work. You know I live in the mountains. A while back someone who was preparing to move here asked…..’what do you do in the winter?’ There is no movie theater. We have a library, bars (best not go there though). For me it is time to hibernate, make soup and bread, have beautiful fires. A good time to create. Many years ago I used to make next years holiday tree ornaments.

  8. My nasturtiums are long gone but I’ll try to remember this great idea for next summer! I love those walks when my mind buzzes with creativity–you should leave the iPod home more often!

  9. I miss your posts. Hope all goes well. I suspect you were moved by David Bowie’s death (being a fan of his music) as many of us are. Be well, dear Karen. wishing you a great 2016.

    • Hello Cynthia, how lovely to get your message. Due to a few set backs I seem to have lost my rhythm. But, I have just penned a new post after a long absence from sweetbabyveg. I was so saddened by Bowie’s death and now, more recently, by that of the actor, Alan Rickman. Are you familiar with him and his work? I loved him in the BBC adaptation of The Warden and Barchester Towers in Anthony Trollope’s ‘Barchester Chronicles’, where he played Obadiah Slope . What a name and what a character he played!
      I have missed our connections through our blogs, which I really value. Happy New Year to you and all your family. Karen x

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