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Friday, August 31, 2012

Drying Herbs

                                       Thai basil "Siam Queen"
I like to grow a few of the herbs I use, indoors, particularly, the ones that are hard to find. I grow many more, in the garden.

Cut a small cluster of stems, from the plant, before it begins to flower. Twist a rubber band around the stems, and find a spot to hang them, until they are dry. In most cases, two weeks is long enough. Here is a bundle I dried, from a Texas tarragon, that had become overgrown.

I've found a less messy way of removing the leaves from the dried stems. Put the bundle in a gallon storage bag, and lightly, crush. The leaves crumble and fall to the bottom of the bag.

Since I was rejuvenating the tarragon, it had already flowered. Remove any flower buds, and stems, from the leaves. Store in jars or a small bag.

Some herbs, come from trees, like this baby bay tree, I recently bought. I wouldn't want to cut this type of plant, just pluck leaves, and dry them on a screen or similar.

                      Drying basil leaves, on a towel covered cooling rack.

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