Sunday, July 17, 2011

Drying Herbs

I decided to try drying some herbs from my pots outside. I LOVE fresh herbs....the smells are divine and I love cooking as much as I can with them. Growing, drying, and storing your own fresh herbs is a wonderful way to be more self-sufficient in your cooking and homesteading activities, but it's also a money-saver!

To start, I collected several healthy stems from my small herb "kitchen" garden. I then tied the stems in bunches with some twine and hung them from a wrought-iron metal gate we have in our foyer area. I thought this would be a good place since it stays dry and pretty cool.

dried herbs

Next I simply plucked the leaves of each herb from the primary stems and stored each in an air-tight container. It is best to use your dried herbs up within a year. It is also recommend not to chop or mince the leaves until you are ready to use them in order to preserve freshness. It couldn't be any easier!

plucking the rosemary from its stem

Store your dried herbs in air-tight containers. It is recommended that you not chop or crush the herbs until you
are ready to use them in cooking. They will retain more of their flavor this way. 

Harvesting frequently and drying in the summer allows you to enjoy fresh herbs throughout the colder months. I could not believe how simple a task it was. I am never buying store-bought herbs that I can grow in my backyard again!

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