It's been a while since I wrote a post about my plants and today is the day because I've just done something really exciting for the first time.
That's drying my own herbs! Yeah, when you're approaching the big 3-0, it's the things like this that excite you. 😂😂
As I saw my herbs going a little crazy early last week, I realized it was about time to prune them. This time, I actually planned ahead what to do with the cuttings. I LOVE using dried herbs in my cooking so I thought I'd dry them. Within the next few minutes I found myself shopping for a drying rack online.
After looking for some time, I finally ordered one that was made for drying dad deaw (sun-dried) meat. This is not the flat basket you see in the picture below and sorry I didn't take a picture of the rack I bought. I promise I will next time but basically my drying rack is the ugliest drying rack EVER. It's huge, it's blue, it's doesn't look cool at all. But it does the job. 😉
Anyway, I got the rack on the next day so I cut the herbs the morning after. This time I did oregano, parsley and tarragon. After I got the cuttings, I rinsed them under running water, placed them in the rack, and hung the rack out in the sun, on a clothes drying rack to be precise!
Because the sun is very strong here in Thailand, I thought one day would be enough for the leaves to dry. But I was wrong. At the end of Day 1, I checked the herbs and it looked like they needed more time to dry. So I left the rack outside for another day.
At the end of the Day 2, the herbs started to look right. I tore some to smell before sorting them out inside the house and I found that they weren't as fragrant as I had expected. To be honest I was a bit disappointed so I went online to find out what went wrong.
And I found that some websites suggested the sun is naturally too strong for drying herbs. Like, it would take away much of their fragrances. They recommended drying them in an oven or food dehydrator. At that point, I thought, Really? Never mind, I'll try the oven option next time.
Then I left the herbs in the rack somewhere in the kitchen, thinking the quality wouldn't be good enough. About five days later, I wanted to put away the rack so I was like, hmmm, maybe I'll grind them and see what happens.
So I removed the leaves from the stems and and grind each herb separately in my mini blender. And guess what, the moment I opened the first batch, I was so surprised that the smell of the herb was so strong. This was also true for the other two herbs. It was amazing! I was so glad I didn't decide to throw away the herbs. They were super awesome and definitely usable. So yeah, if you grow herbs and love using dried herbs, I highly recommend you dry them yourself! You'll be surprised at how satisfying this is!
How To Dry Your Homegrown Herbs
1. Cut the herbs and rinse under running water.
2. Dry the herbs in a drying rack either inside or outside for 1-2 days or until dried.
3. Remove the leaves of the dried herbs from the stems.
4. Discard the stems and grind the leaves in a blender.
5. Store the ground herbs in airtight containers.
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