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Storing Fresh Herbs: Simple Tricks to Make Your Fresh Herbs Last TWICE as Long

The Complete Herbal Guide / Growing Herbs  / Storing Fresh Herbs: Simple Tricks to Make Your Fresh Herbs Last TWICE as Long
Storing Fresh Herbs: Simple Tricks to Make Your Fresh Herbs Last TWICE as Long

Storing Fresh Herbs: Simple Tricks to Make Your Fresh Herbs Last TWICE as Long

Spring is just around the corner (even though it still feels like winter and it’s going to snow again today…sigh.) The birds are starting to chirp a little louder, store windows are displaying the colorful shades of the new season, and a whole new array of in-season fruits and vegetables will be coming to a farmers market near you.

In season produce tastes so much more flavorful and when you add fresh herbs to that mix, the play of flavors intensifies and explodes! I love putting fresh herbs in my dishes. They lend a stronger, purer taste than their dried counterparts and they accent your meals with an amazing bright green splash of color. Remember, we eat with our eyes first.

So now you’re all excited about buying that large, beautiful, bright green bunch of parsley that’s staring you down. However, the horrors of what you have found in your refrigerator 3 days after your purchase come to mind. That gorgeous bushel of greens that you remembered started to turn brown and slimy only days after its emerald leaves danced over your sweet potato stew.

The truth is we can’t buy just a few sprigs of parsley or basil. They come in large bunches and unless we’re cooking enough for 50 people, we’re most likely not going to use it all up in a few days. But don’t fret, because there is a solution to make your fresh herbs last and give you a hell of a lot more bang for your buck.

For herbs such as cilantro, parsley, and basil, treat them as you would flowers. They are all plants. Here’s what to do:

Preserving Cilantro and Parsley

  1. Take the herbs out of the plastic bag, if you’ve used one, and cut about 1/4″ – 1/2″ off the stems
  2. Remove any string or wrap holding the herbs together
  3. Fill a glass or small jar with water and place herbs in it
  4. Keep the glass in the refrigerator. Herbs will keep for about 2 weeks this way.

Preserving Basil

  1. Take the herbs out of plastic bag or container and cut about 1/4″ – 1/2″ off the stems
  2. Remove any string or wrap holding the herbs together
  3. Fill a glass or small jar with water and place herbs in it. For basil, you might need to use a shorter glass than for cilantro and parsley which have longer stems
  4. Keep glass out on the counter or in front of a window. Basil tends to turn black quicker if kept in cold conditions, so don’t keep in the refrigerator

Bonus Tip

Another quick way to use large amounts of leftover fresh herbs is to blend them with some olive oil, garlic, nuts (pine nuts, almonds, walnuts), and a little sea salt and pepper to make a quick pesto and store in the freezer for future use. Store in a container or in ice trays to help with portioning out just what you want to use.

AUTHOR

Tina Paymaster

Tina Paymaster is a Certified Holistic Health & Lifestyle Coach in New York City. Her mission is to help women regain control of their health by realizing their true potential and finding ways to balance the various areas of their lives. She currently works with clients around the U.S., helping women feel empowered, fearless and ready to take on life’s daily obstacles.

 

Herbal Guide Staff

schillemi@thecompleteherbalguide.com

The Complete Guide to Natural Healing believes that food, vitamins, supplements, and alternative medicine can be your best medicine. Our staff will show you the truth about health and wellness, so you can help your family and closest friends get even healthier. You’ll learn exactly what you should do and how to eat to get healthy, exercise to get your leanest, healthiest body and how to take control of your family’s health, using natural remedies as medicine.