Hill Collection: Herbs For Later

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Herbs For Later

A couple of years ago husband (then fiancĂ©) and I bought a small cream colored pot with soil and basil seeds in it. It was marketed for the beginnings of an herb garden and it caught my attention. I've always wanted an herb garden in my kitchen window. But, I've never had a window seal big enough. That pretty little pot got stashed away and forgotten about. Until several months ago when husband was tidying up the garage and came across it in one of our packing boxes. 

Thinking it had no hope of growing basil, we planted it anyway and placed it in our barely-the-right-size widow seal (because that's what you do when you think something has no hope, you hope for it). Low and behold that basil grew and it has taken off. You can see it below, and that photo was taken at the end of April. It has only continued sprouting and reaching for the sun. In fact it's growing so much that we can't use it fast enough. We don't want to waste so we were facing some type of decision about what to do with all the excess. 

Then my dad sent us a start on some chives. We found a little clay pot and planted them, after husband chopped up the extra. Again, what are we going to do with these chives? No we're not adding them to the lemon poppy seed pancakes I was making as husband diligently chopped herbs. No we're not throwing them away. What to do, what to do. My Saturday morning brain was not working, but husband's was. And he thought that freezing them for later use was our best option. So we did. And this is how...

  • Husband started by gently plucking all the healthy excess basil from the plant. And set it aside. 
  • Next he rinsed the chives and chopped them into tiny bits. 
  • He waited until the herbs had dried and then placed them in small zip lock baggies for safe keeping in the freezer. (You can freeze them prior to sealing them in baggies by spreading them out on a small tray or cookie sheet and placing them in the freezer for a bit. It may help to keep them from freezing into a solid brick.)
  • He made sure to squeeze out all the extra air and that the bag was well sealed. 
That's really how easy it is to store herbs for a later use. And word has it that basil and chives are two of several herbs that freeze well. There are multiple methods for freezing herbs such as putting them in ice cube trays with oil or water. It all depends on how you're going to use them in the future. I'm thinking these chives will be making an appearance in some corn cake fritters this Friday! 

Keep in mind that frozen herbs aren't best for topping food with because they may be limp, but mixing them in with food and seasoning with them is the way to go!


Happy Hump Day everyone! And did you see husband's guest post for a weekly August series yesterday?? If you didn't, you should. You won't regret it. 



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