Thursday, September 06, 2012

How to Keep Cut Herbs Fresh

We were recently asked a very good question on one of my favorite topics: herbsWhat is the best way to keep cut herbs fresh? 
There are MANY suggestions out there for this, but I have found the following to be the best methods, told to us by herb experts at The Growers Exchange.  

1. Clean and wrap them. Wash herbs well: swish them around in a large bowl of cool water to remove dirt and dust from the leaves, lift them out of the water, shake off any excess water, dry them in a salad spinner or pat them dry with paper towels, roll them up in clean and dry paper towels, and store them thus wrapped in a plastic bag in the fridge. Herbs treated this way will keep very well for at least a week.

2. Store them like flowers. Put a bunch of herbs in a vase or jar of water as you would flowers. Cover loosely with a plastic bag and put in the fridge. Herbs kept this way will keep several days; the better they are covered with plastic so they don't dry out, the longer they will keep.

3. Tupperware!  Store the fresh herbs in a tupperware container.  Wash the herbs the same as above, put a centimeter of water in the bottom of a dish and cover!  Herbs will stay fresh in the refrigerator for up to 3 weeks or until they get wilty.

Of course, there are other long term ways to save your fresh summer herbs for the winter

storing herbs1. Freeze Them in Water: Wash them, chop them, divide them into portions and put them in an ice cube tray with a little bit of water.  You can also put them in ziplock bags and freeze them. This is a good method for using in soups.  Basil is particularly good for freezing. 

2.  Freeze them in Oil: Follow the same instructions as above, just substitute oil.  This is a better method for sauteed herbs or cooking

Here are some more tips and tricks from one of my favorite bloggers, Margaret Roach.  And thanks for the questions, Triple Threat Mommy!


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