The Herb Garden – Part 2

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chives

Good Morning how are you all this morning? Does anyone still have summer? Whilst running this morning I was dreaming of warm balmy days sigh . . .

For part 2 in the series The Herb Garden it is time to dry some herbs ready for use in the winter. Harvest them now and they will continue to grow abundantly during the summer and yes you can harvest again.   There are hardy perennial herbs such as Chevril, Rosemary, Sage, Thyme, Oregano which if in a sheltered position will continue to grow slowly during the winter.

However I like to dry some of my herbs. You can do this by air drying them, or by drying them in a warmed oven. To air dry your herbs pick your bunch place them in a paper bag and hang then over your cooker or in an airing cupboard. The length of drying time will depend on how much warm air is passing over them.

To dry them in a gently warmed oven, turn on your oven to a low heat, once it has reached its temperature turn it off. To dry your herbs this way lay them out on a baking tray and place in the warm oven until dry.

Once your herbs are dried, place in an airtight jar and use as required. I dry Oregano, Chives, Thyme and Sage.

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You can also make up individual bouquet garni’s and dry these ready to use as you need to. A Bouquet Garni is made up of sprigs of Thyme, Rosemary, Parsley and a Bay Leaf tied together – great for casseroles

Tips for Drying Herbs

  1. Harvest your herbs do so before they burst into flower, once they have flowered the leaves can become less tender.
  2. Wait until a dry warm day and cut your herb
  3. Take off any old or withered leaves and remember to shake out the insects!
  4. Your herbs will retain more of their flavour if you store them whole and crush them when you use them
  5. Fresh herbs contain approx 90% of water, dried herbs approx 10%, therefore dried herbs are more concentrated, use 1 teaspoon of dried to 1 tablespoon of fresh

That is it for today, this weekend we have a school parents day, followed by our freinds 40th birthday party – so I think by Sunday I shall be looking forward to a rest. How about you – what are you up to this weekend? Remember you caan leave your comments

Whatever you are doing have fun and take are. Thankyou for reading see you on Monday

Take care

Katie x

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