Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Preserve the Herbs

 This week in my bountiful basket i ordered the herb pack for an additional $10 here is what  i got:
dill, rosemary, oregano, sage, cilantro, parsley, basil, 2 cloves garlic
I knew i would get a good helping of herbs but my good it was a BUNCH. I've never seen more basil in my life (except of course on the plants). I put everything in the fridge and it nearly filled my tiny apartment refrigerator and i knew i couldnt use it all before it went bad so i decided to start researching! 

Drying would be appropriate for the herbs, but you need a cool, dry, dark place and lots of patience as it can take 2 weeks or more for them to dry- this girl isnt that patient. 

The oregano and sage are best preserved dry so i did a quick dry with them. 
1. spread out flat on cookie sheet
2. turn oven to bake at the lowest temp you have
3. place herbs on middle rack
4. Leave to bake for 1 hour with the door slightly ajar
5. turn oven off and allow to sit overnight with the door cracked. 
6. pluck now dry leaves from their stems and store in an air tight container
most herbs are good for about a year when properly dried. If not properly dried that can mold and mildew so be careful! 

The leafy herbs like basil, cilantro, and even the rosemary freeze really well. i made herb cubes with the rest of my herbs...

Herb Cubes

Basil leaves, plucked, washed, and pat dry
                                whatever herb u use needs to be clean if you are going to freeze it. 
roughly chopped and coated with olive oil 
after washing and patting dry, use a food processor or a good knife to roughly chop your herb if its leafy like basil is. Place in a bowl and coat well with olive oil. This will preserve the color of your herb. 
Transfer your coated herb into ice trays. The bottom row i filled completely, the top row i filled about halfway so i can have a lot or just a little basil whenever i need it. Fill the trays the rest of the way with water, broth, olive or vegetable oil, or room temp melted butter. I just use water as its most universal for future use. Freeze overnight. 
dont forget to label the bag! 
After the cubes have frozen solid, remove from the ice trays and place in a freezer bag or other air tight freezer worthy container! These are super easy to take out and use in any recipe! 

you can make cubes of cilantro and parsley or any other small leaf herb without chopping them, just remember to wash them well. :)


1 comment:

  1. This is a great tutorial--thanks!