Saturday, November 26, 2016

A Few Tips on Herbs


 I've just a few pictures today of some handy ways to cut up your fresh herbs.
Here in the Lower Mainland of the Fraser Valley we usually have mild wet winters so some of our herbs will survive the winter.


Rosemary is very hardy. I've been able to use it fresh almost all winter.


Some Sage leaves may turn yellow and drop but now in November, there are still plenty of fresh leaves to snip.


Basil, on the other hand, wilts quickly when the cool damp weather hits so I buy it in bunches at our local produce market.  Although it doesn't work all the time, I find if I keep the fresh basil in a vase on the windowsill, it will sometimes take root and stay fresh for longer. I could even plant this now and have a lovely fresh plant all winter long.
One tip about Basil - do not store it in the fridge or allow the leaves to get damp.  They will turn colour and wilt quickly. Wrap it loosely in paper towel and store in an open plastic bag.


The best way to snip Rosemary is to strip the leaves off of the stem into a small cup.
Hold the stem of rosemary at the top and slide your fingers down the stem to release the needles into your cup.  Then simply take your kitchen scissors and point the tip into the bottom of the cup, snipping until the Rosemary is fine enough for your use.


You can use the cup and scissors method for other fresh herbs such as dill, parsley and cilantro.


For Chives, snip your chives into 4 or 5 inch lengths and then snip the whole bunch at once into the desired size.

To cut up fresh Basil. stack the leaves.
Cut lengthwise down the centre vein and stack again

Then slice the stacked leaves into a chiffonade.  If you want longer strands of basil,leave the leaves whole before slicing and if you want finer pieces, cut the leaves one more time lengthwise before slicing them crosswise.


Fresh herbs spark up any dish and are now readily available year round in most major grocery stores and produce markets so go ahead and enjoy them all year round.


2 comments:

  1. One of the best kitchen gadgets I ever bought was a pair of herb scissors. They have 5 blades and cut everything in uniform slices. I use them all the time.

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    1. I've got a pair of those and like to use them for parsley.

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