Beyond the Spice Rack: Preserving Herbs in Creative Ways
Drying herbs is a perfectly fine way to store your garden-fresh flavorings for use throughout the year, but it isn’t the only game in town. You can preserve herbs in many creative ways that can add some lift to your cold-weather culinary creations. Freshly preserved garden herbs also make wonderful gifts that are beautiful and personal. I have written many articles on preserving herbs in creative ways and this guide on my other blog over on eBay is a great one to start with.READ: 5 Ways to Preserve The Freshness of Herbs
If you are lucky enough, you may have some herbs that grow throughout the year, or perhaps the seasons are so different that the only year-round growing you do is indoors. I’m able to keep woody perennial herbs like rosemary, sage, lavender in my garden and many will keep just enough leaves in the winter to harvest them fresh. Winters have been unpredictable as of late (as I’m sure that you have noticed) and so not every plant that used to survive has made it through the rocky road of climate change. Before I risk losing those woody herbs to a cold winter’s night, I propagate them by cuttings and move them indoors. Here are some articles on how to propagate and grow herbs indoors:
- How to Propagate Herbs
- Which Herbs to Grow Indoors (and Which Herbs NOT to Grow Indoors)
- How to Grow Herbs Indoors (Successfully)
You can always use herbs for crafts as well. The cover of my book, Garden Made, shows harvested sage and other seasonal garden cuttings like seed heads, flowers, and even garlic bulbs can be turned into a wreath. Here are more of the articles we have shared on Garden Therapy for preserving herbs in creative ways:
- I’m particularly fond of crafting with lavender and have done more projects than I can count with it. Here is are the ones I have written about: 18 Soothing Ways to Use Lavender at Home
- You can dry your herbs right in the kitchen: Make a Gorgeous Culinary Herb Wreath
- Or infuse them out in the sun: Sun Tea: Two Ways | Hundreds of Possibilities!
- Let’s not forget the king of the annual herbs, basil. There is nothing quite like the aroma of sweet basil cut fresh from the garden. Dried basil just isn’t the same thing! Basil can be so productive that you may have more on your hands than you know what to do with. This article on 15 Recipes to Use and Preserve Fresh Basil should help.
- You might also like this tour of my newly renovated herb garden: A Culinary Kitchen Garden Perfect for Small Spaces.
My herb garden is the most rewarding garden I have at home. I’m always looking for new ideas for preserving herbs and using them in recipes. Please share any of your favorite ideas in the comments. I will keep posting ideas as I try them as well.
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