The essential ingredients in the classic European bouquet garni are parsley, bay leaf, and thyme. Every culture on earth has its own flavor-enhancing ingredients, and many new combinations -- Southeast Asia's lemon grass, ginger, and garlic or Mexico's cilantro, chili peppers, and lime -- are becoming part of the American vernacular.
Take a look at these tips for creating a Bouquet Garni:
Try These Techniques:
The Italian way
Some Italian cooks tie their flavorings between two snuggly fitting pieces of celery, making removal simple and quick. And yes, garlic is a natural addition to the herbs in a bouquet garni.
The French, conscious of technique, tie their "bouquets" into cheesecloth bundles, making sure nary a leaf escapes into the broth. Rosemary, tarragon, and lavender will give it a French twist.
Casual American cooks often toss flavorings right into the pot, sticking cloves into an onion and poking a toothpick through the garlic, so diners avoid unwelcome bites of seasoning.