It’s mid summertime and your garden is in full bloom. Who needs 7 cups of Basil, 4 cups of Rosemary, and 5 cups of Dill all at once? No one, that’s who. Well, maybe Gordon Ramsay does…
Have you considered drying your herbs so they’ll last you through the winter? This is one of the easiest tasks that pays out in big dividends since you can do it several times throughout the growing season. Not only do you benefit from a haircut, your herbs benefit from one too.
Here’s an image of my basil trying to bolt. Bolting happens when the plant is exposed to high heat. It’s a defense mechanism really. At this stage, the plant attempts coming to maturity by flowering and thus, creating seeds (little basil offspring). You want to prevent this by cutting the flowering stems off of the plant.
“All the flowers of all the tomorrows are in the seeds of today.” – Chinese Proverb
It’s okay Mrs. Basil, your time isn’t coming to an end. Yet….
On the other hand, my Cilantro bolted so fast I couldn’t save it in time. Cilantro only likes partial sun. 🙂
I’m going to nip this in the bud.
You can go about this in many ways, lay the herbs flat on a paper towel, put them in a food dehydrator, hang them up to dry, etc.
I’ve done it three different ways (make sure you rinse them well prior to the next step):
- Bundled and hung them in the sun
- Bundled and hung them under a brown paper bag in the shade
- Laid them flat in between two sheets of paper towels
The paper towel method worked best for me. After a couple of days they were crunchy and ready to be jarred.
I keep two different jars on hand. The jar on the left is from Ball and I use it for my pre-mixed rubs, spice concoctions, etc. The jar on the right is from Brandless.com and it’s the perfect size. The best part, you can buy the Brandless jar in a 4-pack for $3!
So anyway, that’s it.
Pick your herbs, rinse your herbs, dry your herbs, jar your herbs.
But the most important part is to have fun while you’re doing it… oh, and to brag about it later on. 😉
Some info: Do you know the difference between herbs and spices? Herbs are the leaves of the plant. Spices are the non-leafy parts like bark, seeds, etc. “The more you know!”