This summer, I planted a herb container garden. Basil, Parsley, Thyme, and Spring Onions. Some herbs thrived while others died, but I didn't get discouraged. I just cared for the ones that succeeded and made sure to harvest fresh herbs for our meals throughout the summer.
Our basil is growing out of control, so I had to get busy gathering it, and began researching the drying process. I first tried to bundle them and hang them upside down to dry the leaves, but after two weeks, they still seem to be moist and had to try another method. I think the humidity in our place is too high for them to dry properly, so I decided to try drying my herbs in the oven. So here is what I did.
- Set oven at 150 degrees
- Snip and gather your fresh basil
- Rinse away any debris that may be on the basil
- Blot dry with a cloth and place on baking pans
Parchment paper is helpful in making sure your basil doesn't stick or burn in the oven.
Place baking pans in the oven for 1 hour or more. I can tell they are dehydrated when our place has that pleasant aroma of basil, and it is dry to the touch.
After the leaves are dehydrated, I place the dried leaves in a bowl and crushed them by hand. You can use a food processor or a mortar & pestle, but for easy cleanup, I like to use a large bowl.
That's it, so easy!
I stored my crushed basil in a clean airtight container.
Now I will have basil for all those beautiful fall and winter meals.
One of the most important things I have learned is something about the drying process releases the oils in the herbs, and that means they are more potent than fresh herbs.
So remember: 1 part dried herb = 3 parts fresh herb
I plan on trying this technique with more herbs in the future and will share as I learn more. If you get into drying herbs, you may want to invest in a dehydrator. For now, it's not necessary. I hope this helps you get started!
All the items on this blog post were purchased with my own money and are not sponsored. Just products I love, that also make my life a little easier. I am not an herbalist or a doctor. Do your research! Be sure you and your family members are not allergic to any of these ingredients before using this recipe.