Drying Fresh Herbs
Drying herbs is something that any home cook enthusiast or gardener can do. There’s something very satisfying about preserving fresh herbs from your own garden to use throughout the year.
Drying your own herbs is easy! Although different herbs require different techniques, I like to use two easy methods.
For the best flavor, you can pick your herbs when they are beginning to bud but before they flower. Discard any yellow leaves. Make sure that you wash and pat dry the herbs you will be drying.
Method #1: Bunching
This method works best for drying thicker, moister herbs: Marjoram, lavender, chives, rosemary, lemon balm.
Simple version: Tie small bunches of herbs together by their stems. You can use string or even a rubber band. Hang upside down in an area free from dust and bugs. Wait 3-4 weeks and they’ll be dry. If you want to protect them more, put them in a paper bag, stems up and hang. When fully dry, pull off the leaves. Discard the stems. Crumble and place them in individual glass spice containers.
Method #2: Tray Drying
This method works best for drying smaller and less moist herbs: Basil, dill, parsley, cilantro, thyme, oregano, rosemary, mint.
Simple version: Lay herbs out on a cookie sheet. Place in an out of the way place. Turn them over after a week. When fully dry after 2-3 weeks, pull off the leaves. Discard the stems. Crumble and place them in individual glass spice containers.
You will have fresh herbs in glass jars to use whenever you want to add to any kind of fresh food. You can also make herb vinegars. Caution: do not herb oils as one can get sick.