Some herbs loose their flavor when dried and are better preserved by freezing. Fortunately, there are several ways of freezing herbs depending on your needs and the herb itself.
Freezing Herbs in Water or Oil
The “right” way to freeze herbs is to chop them up, put in ice cube trays and then cover the herbs with some water or oil. When you want to use them you can add a little cube of herbs to whatever you are cooking
The “wrong way” to freeze herbs is to put the herbs into a ziplock bag, remove all the air and put in the freezer. Even though this is technically the wrong was to freeze herbs this way actually works really well. When you want to use the herb, just break off a chunk – no need to worry about extra oil or water in your dish.
Basil and cilantro both lose their flavor when dehydrated but not when frozen. If you have room in the freezer, consider freezing basil and cilantro instead of dehydrating them.
Herbs that freeze well…
Making Herbal Pastes to Freeze
Herb pastes are quickly becoming the new cool way of seasoning food. Did you know you can make them at home…for just a fraction of the cost? You can.
To make an herb paste just put some fresh herbs in a food processor (a small one is just fine), turn it on and drizzle olive oil over the herbs until you have a paste. Yep. That’s it.
Put the paste in a mason jar and it will keep for two weeks in the refrigerator. Or put the paste in ice cube trays or small mason jars and store it in the freezer. You can do single herb pastes or mix herbs together and make your own blends.
Herbs that make a good herbal paste…
- Chili Pepper
How to Make Herbal Compound Butters for the Freezer
Compound butter is just a fancy name for butter mixed with fresh herbs. You can use a stand mixer, hand mixer, food processor, pastry blender but a lowly fork works just fine too.
Mix 3-4 tablespoons fresh herbs with ¼ cup butter. You can use a single herb or several herbs.
Once the herbs are mixed thoroughly with the butter, put the compound butter in a small mason jar and store in the refrigerator for a week or in the freezer.
You could also use a silicone butter mold to freeze the compound butter; there are many designs to choose from.
Herbs that make good compound butters…
- Chili Pepper
Other Ways to Preserve Herbs
While freezing herbs is a great way to preserve herbs to use all year long, it’s not the only way to preserve herbs. Drying herbs is an easy, no-fuss way to preserve herbs.