Monday, October 8, 2012

Freezing Herbs

This recipe has been circulating on the web and facebook for several months.  No one I know has tried it in spite of being shared, pinned and discussed.  With an abundance of herbs, I decided to give it a try.

Frozen Herbs in Oil

Preferred hard herbs such as firm fresh rosemary, fennel, sage, thyme and oregano are best.
I also tried:  basil, lemon mint and celery herb.  The tender herbs will probably loose much of their fragrance and taste.  I'll let you know. 

Mix sage, thyme and rosemary for a bouquet garni.

Wash herbs in water and let drain dry or pat dry.  Remove woody stems and damaged/brown leaves.  Chop the herbs into rather small pieces.  Each cube holds about a heaping tablespoon.   

Pack lightly into the wells of plastic ice cube trays; make sure they aren't sticking out the top like the ones on the right below.  They preserve better if completely covered.  My bad...

Pour extra-virgin olive oil or melted, unsalted butter over herbs.  .

Cover lightly with plastic wrap and sit on flat surface in the freezer.  Freeze overnight.

Label (date if you tend to lose things in the freezer) a zip lock freezer bag with the name of the herb and the oil used.  Use a separate bag for each herb.

Remove the frozen cubes from the trays  (plastic trays need to be twisted) and put herb cubes in zip lock freezer bags.  Do all this quickly because the olive oil immediately starts to melt.  If the kitchen is warm, have everything ready and cold.

Return filled bags to the freezer.

Your herbs are ready to use and it preserves all the summer herbs from the garden for delicious winter dishes.  The most expensive thing about this recipe is the quantity of oil needed.  Trays are from a dollar store, I grew the herbs and takes only a few bags.

Doing so many different kinds of herbs and the quantity for this project was a fragrance bonanza. Wonderful!         

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