Spring is here, and so is the abundance of aromatic herbs. These greens are packed with nutritional benefits that can significantly contribute to your overall health and maximize flavor in your favorite low-carb dishes.
From the taste of basil's sweet licorice to the distinct pungent flavor of parsley, herbs can elevate any dish. But how can we best use and preserve these flavor powerhouses to enjoy them year-round? Let's dive in!
Storing Your Herbs
Proper herb storage is crucial to maintaining their freshness and potency.
Tender Herbs - Herbs like basil, parsley, cilantro, and dill should be placed in a glass jar with an inch of water at the bottom. They should be covered loosely with a plastic bag and stored in the refrigerator. Remember to change the water periodically and wash the herbs before use.
Hearty Herbs - Hearty herbs such as rosemary, thyme, oregano, and sage can be cleaned gently with a damp paper towel, wrapped loosely in a fresh, damp paper towel, and stored in a mesh produce bag in the refrigerator.
Drying and Freezing Herbs
For long-term storage, drying and freezing are excellent options.
Drying - Hearty herbs air-dry well, while tender herbs with a high moisture content are best dried in a dehydrator. Once dried, store the leaves in a covered container in your pantry.
Freezing - Freezing herbs can be an excellent method for preserving their flavor. Simply remove leaves from stems, wash and dry them thoroughly, chop them up, and place them in ice cube trays. Depending on your intended use, cover the herbs with high-quality oil or broth for cooking and water or juice for beverages. Once frozen, store the cubes in labeled freezer-safe bags or containers.
Recipes and Inspiration
Fresh herbs can be used in a myriad of ways. Here are some quick ideas:
Parsley is an excellent addition to salads, soups, and pestos.
Basil shines in pestos, salads, and sauces.
Cilantro adds a refreshing twist to curries, soups, stews, and salsas.
Rosemary pairs wonderfully with meats and roasted vegetables.
Dill is a favorite for dressings, marinades, and salads.
Mint adds a lovely flavor to beverages, salads, and fruit.
For more creative recipe ideas, check out our latest Instagram posts.
Herbs are a delightful way to boost flavor and nutritional value. By properly storing, drying, or freezing them, you can enjoy these green wonders all year round.
So, the next time you're in the kitchen, don't hesitate to reach for that bunch of fresh herbs. Your taste buds - and your health - will thank you.