On to time saving tips….
In addition to having a hectic life, we live in a third-world country. That means the added step of disinfecting fruits, vegetables, and herbs. All of this leads to a couple of tips and tricks, some learned from my mom (hey, when you have a garden and the harvest happens, you have to do something before it spoils) and friends.
So, what are these tips and tricks? These are time and money savers. Who hasn’t bought a bunch of cilantro or parsley and had it go bad just after using just part of it? Who hasn’t bought a head of garlic and then in the next glance see green sprouts? And for those of you in third-world countries, who hasn’t finished a dish and realized you forgot the garnish or that little bit of parsley, but really don’t want to now have to pull out the bowl and disinfect for just a little bit? Hopefully, this will help.
Fresh, soft herbs (Parsley, basil, scallions, cilantro (or culantro as it is called here), chives, etc.)-harder herbs (rosemary, thyme, etc.) are best done with the oil method, not this one.
Note - This method of freezing will make your herbs on the softer side, which may or may not work for gourmet garnishes. However, it's a huge time and money-saver for those weeknight meals. Also, they have the tendency to freeze together in the jar. Just scrape a bit with a fork to loosen what you need for your sauce, pasta, salad dressing or other recipe.
- First wash, disinfect if needed, and let your herbs dry. Drying is particularly important to lessen how much freezes together in a block.
- Gather and clean a few jars – peeling off labels is up to you. For me it depends on time, as you can see below.
- Pull or cut leaves off the stems. If you are my mom, do this while watching TV or a movie…hehehe…it actually works great.
- Chop finely or coarsely, it is up to you.
- Add it to your jar and freeze. It’s a simple as that.
- For the garlic as a frozen product- just take out the number of cloves and let thaw out 5 minutes or so and mince away. They will be a bit softer that fresh cloves, but I find it helps me almost crush it. Just be wary of mincing while it’s still frozen solid…no bloody fingers please.