Herbs and How to Keep Them

April 30, 2012 § Leave a comment


Parsley, Sage, Rosemary and Thyme….

and Cilantro, and Dill, and Basil, and Mint, and….

 

Nothing gets me madder than going to the fridge for fresh herbs and finding mushy, slimy remnants of greenness that were once herbs. Well, there are actually quite a few things that get me madder but nothing that needs to be said here!

I use herbs in almost every dish, desserts too. Basil and strawberries. Mint and pears. Thyme and pretty much everything. I like using fresh herbs, and this method will keep them that way for weeks if you don’t use them up by then.

Find a cup, mug, or glass jar, (something pretty to look at is nice too), large enough to hold the herbs and add fresh water. Fill it about half way.

Then get a plastic bag, like the kind you brought them home in, and put over the top of your herbs. You want to create a moist, greenhouse like environment for them. Don’t close up too tightly, they have to breathe too.

If you’re adverse to plastic, I think you could probably try cheesecloth or those reusable bags they sell now. I haven’t tried that yet so let me know how that works if you do try it.

Then put it into the refrigerator. Oh and don’t rinse the herbs until you’re ready to use them. And change the water every few days too.

Of course you could freeze some of these as well, though they’ll be a bit limp when defrosted. Strip the leaves off and lay them on a cookie sheet and put in freezer, then once frozen, into a zip lock bag they go. Another way is to freeze in ice cube trays. Strip the leaves, chop if you like, fill an ice cube tray halfway and top with water. Freeze. When frozen, top with a bit more water as the herbs will have floated to the top. Refreeze, then pop out, and into the baggie.

I like to dry my herbs too. I have huge amounts of thyme, oregano and marjoram from my garden and I just tie them in a bundle and hang them in a dry place, usually my kitchen.

A food dehydrator works well for some herbs like parsley and tarragon. I have one but find hanging them so much easier, not to mention nice to look at all winter long.

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