Herb Harvesting in the Fall: What a wonderful tip!

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Herb Harvesting in the Fall

By BookerC1
November 8, 2011

Before the first frost of fall, harvest the last of your herbs. Chop them finely, put them in an ice cube tray, and cover with either water or olive oil. (I designate my blue trays for herbs, so they aren't inadvertently used for regular ice cubes later.) You can do cubes of individual herbs (one cube would equal about 1-1/2 tsp. of dried herb in a recipe), or a combination of compatible herbs, like basil and oregano, or rosemary and thyme. Cover the tray with plastic wrap, and when they are frozen hard, transfer them to labeled freezer bags.

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Name: Zuzu
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zuzu
Nov 7, 2011 8:08 PM CST

Plants Admin

This is a great idea.
Name: Susie
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Aguane
Nov 7, 2011 11:11 PM CST
Very good! I've done this with a bountiful basil yield. I do it with chopped garlic, too. Haven't tried with other herbs however. When you think about it most herbs do touch olive oil somewhere in the cooking process. Thanks for the tip, BookerC1!
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Name: Carole
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SongofJoy
Nov 8, 2011 4:56 AM CST
Thumbs up Works with water too although the herbs tend to float to the surface. Fresh herb leaves can also be placed on a tray in a single layer and frozen, then placed in containers.
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[Last edited by SongofJoy - Nov 8, 2011 4:57 AM (+)]
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Name: Sheryl
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sheryl
Nov 8, 2011 11:03 AM CST
Angie, do you have any problems with freezing the oil? I ask because I had problems with using th e-mail tip about freezing left over wine. Maybe my freezer isn't cold enough.....
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Name: Lee Anne Stark
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threegardeners
Nov 8, 2011 12:55 PM CST
leftover wine wouldn't freeze solid like oil on account of the alcohol.

I might try this tip with some catnip too...
Name: Sheryl
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sheryl
Nov 8, 2011 1:33 PM CST
Yeah, I didn't think it would, but I see that tup a lot- wonder if I'm the only one wo has actually *tried* it, lol...
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bitbit
Nov 8, 2011 1:52 PM CST
Wine shouldn't freeze solid at regular household freezer temps. Olive oil solidifies at refrigerator temperatures, so it should have no problem in the freezer. But, like any oil, it will be a bit buttery/waxy, not really hard like an ice cube.

I freeze my herbs in water, or just loosely in Ziploc bags, though the latter is more prone to freezer burn. I've never actually tried the oil method.
Name: Angie
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BookerC1
Nov 8, 2011 3:55 PM CST
I only use the olive oil method on the herbs I use in Italian cooking, where I would use olive oil anyway. I pack the chopped herbs in as tightly as I can, and only end up using maybe a teaspoon of oil for a cube. It is just enough to make them hold together in a cube shape when frozen. If it is a strong-flavored herb (like rosemary), where I wouldn't want an entire cube of it, just fill the cube space halfway and make half cubes.

I've never tried freezing either garlic or wine.

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StephGTx
Nov 8, 2011 4:07 PM CST
Love this tip!!! Thumbs up Gotta try it next year! Thumbs up
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Name: Angie
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BookerC1
Nov 8, 2011 5:05 PM CST
An example of one I would use in water, rather than olive oil, would be mint. I don't think olive oil would do much for mint brownies. Hilarious! I've also done sage, chives, marjoram, and thyme in water, though olive oil would work for any of those. The water does freeze more solid than the oil. If you are tossing it into stew or tomato sauce or something, the extra liquid really doesn't affect the recipe.

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