Dry Your Own Herbs with Kilner®

If you’ve taken the time to cultivate your very own herb garden inside Kilner® Jars, it would be a shame for them to go to waste once the harvest season is over.

Almost all herbs can be dried, but results will differ depending on the size of the leaves. Experiment with a few different methods to really find what works for you and your herbs. The easiest herbs to dry have strong leaves such as bay leaves, rosemary, thyme and sage, and the more tender varieties like basil, parsley, mint, and tarragon can be trickier. These more delicate leaves will need to be dried quickly to prevent moulding.

Here are few ways to dry your surplus crop of fresh herb leaves so they can be preserved and used throughout the rest of the year.

Method 1: Air-drying indoors

This is the preferred method and will keep all of the herb’s flavour and colour better than outdoor drying.

  1. Create bunches of the herbs using an elastic band or twine. If your herbs have flowers, these should be facing downwards.
  2. A paper bag or wrap can aid the drying process and help catch seeds and debris as your herbs dry, but isn’t essential. If you decide against the bag, then you’ll have some nice bunches of herbs to display!
  3. Hang your herbs to dry away from direct sunlight and moisture. Hang them from ceiling beams, ladders, coat hangers or even picture hooks or nails: Whatever you have on hand!
  4. Leave them to dry for between 5 and 14 days. Drying time can vary based on conditions and the herbs you’re using.
  5. Herbs will be ready when they just begin to crisp at the touch.

Method 2: Oven drying

This method requires a little bit more attention from you but is much faster than air-drying.

  1. Pre-heat your oven to the lowest temperature it will allow and leave the door open.
  2. Arrange your freshly picked herbs on a baking tray lined with baking paper or greaseproof parchment.
  3. Place the sheet in the over at the very lowest point and leave to dry.
  4. Turn the herbs frequently to avoid burning and when they appear a little crisp remove from the oven and allow to cool naturally before storing them.

Whichever method you choose, once you have dried your herbs use a pestle and mortar to grind them into a fine dust. Storing them in air-tight containers, such as Kilner® Clip Top Spice Jars will help keep their flavour and colour for longer and will prevent them from going stale before you use them. If you want to use your dried herbs for cooking, we recommend you use them within 6 months of the drying process.

 

10th May 2018

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