Herbs deliver flavor, fragrance and culiary pizzazz year-round. By drying or freezing your herbs, you can enjoy seasons of delicious seasoning. Here's how:
What to Dry, What to Freeze
The low-moisture leaves of dill, oregano, rosemary and thyme are perfect for drying. Herbs with high-moisture leaves, like basil and cilantro, are best preserved by freezing.
For peak flavor, harvest your fresh herbs just before they flower and before they go to seed. To harvest the herbs, choose a day that is warm and dry, and wait until the dew has evaporated before picking.
Gather the herbs and tie several stems together with string or an elastic band into a bunch. Hang the herb packets in a warm, well venelilated and dry room. Traditionally this was an attic, but a closet will work as well. Cover with a paper bag with a few holes to prevent dust.
Let your herbs dry for at least two weeks. Once fully dry, pluck off herb's leaves and store in an airtight jar labeled with with date. Herbs are their tastiest if used within a year. Store all your dried herbs in a dark cabinet, and remember that when you use the herbs in a recipe that calls for fresh herbs you will use approximately 1/3 the amount of dried herb.