Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Fresh Basil

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Thanks to a very dear friend, Michelle, I have learned to not only grow my own basil, but dry it for later use.  If I can do this, anyone can!

First, grow basil in a pot (like below) or in your garden.


 Next, pick the basil leaves off the plant, rinse them off, and pat dry.

 Arrange the dried leaves on a paper plate or or paper towel.  Cover with a dry paper towel.

 Microwave on HIGH 30 seconds.  Check their progress.  Microwave for another 30 seconds until the leaves are dried out and crunchy.  This usually takes me 1-1 1/2 minutes.

 When the leaves are dry, they will look like this.

 Using your fingers, crush the leaves like below.  If you have any large stems, remove them from the pile.

 Store in an air-tight jar for later use.  I am recycling a store-bought container.  I just changed the name to "Mom's Basil."

 Cool shot, huh!?!?!  Use in recipes just like you do store-bought seasoning.

Enjoy!

Blessings,

     Ellen


24 comments:

  1. This is great! I've been making a load of pesto with our bounty of basil, but I love this option as well!

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  2. Oh I love fresh basil! It never makes it to the dried phase though, I love pesto too much! I love your blog, am a new follower!

    http://marleeindebt.blogspot.com/

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  3. Cool post! I've always wanted to plant basil. I absolutely LOVE fresh basil in my pasta dishes & other things. My mother-in-law has like 3 huge pots. I'm sure not all of it stays fresh so this is a good idea to pass along to her. I bet fresh basil dried is a lot better and healthier than the store bought kind. Have you found it tastes better?

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  4. Hi! I am your newest follower from the
    blog hop! I would love it if you could follow me back
    and we become bloggy friends! :)

    Have a lovely day,
    ~meg~
    a meg moment

    http://agemmoment.blogspot.com/

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  5. I've dried basil in my oven, but I haven't tried it in the microwave. Thanks for the tips--I'm going to do this with my next batch. I've already "put up" 7 jars of basil this summer, and my plants are still growing strong!

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  6. Nice work! Isn't it satisfying to harvest your own food!!

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  7. Ellen, Thank so much for linking up this tip! It seems of all my herbs Basil is the one I have plenty of. :)

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  8. Thanks for the tip. I never knew you could dry spices in the microwave. I have a basil plant in the house for the first time this year. Do you know if it will continue to produce all winter, or will I need to dry it before it dies?

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  9. I love basil, especially fresh. I tried to grow some last and this year and the leaves were tiny, just a little bigger than a thumbnail. If you keep removing leaves, does the plant grow new ones? Or, does it eventually die out like tomato plants. Planted tomatoes over septic tank, they are thriving wonderfully.
    Good info on the drying process, but how to get decent sized basil?
    Coriander, red leaf lettuce and mint plants went crazy, couldn't keep up with them, they became giants. But basil? no luck.

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  10. Anthony... This is my first time growing seasonings. What I have found is that the more I harvest, the better/bigger it grows. So far, it hasn't puckered out like my tomato plants are doing. ~ Ellen

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  11. Heather... since this is the first time I have ever grown it,I'm not sure what to expect in the winter. I think I'm going to plant new seeds in an indoor pot and see how it goes. If all goes well, it will become an outdoor plant in the spring. ~ Ellen

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  12. Hi Ellen, I just did this yesterday, it worked out well-thanks! Gave you a shout-out on my blog. Happy Weekend:@)

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  13. How fun. I've grown veggies in the past, but I've never grown my own herbs. Love your step by step directions.

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  14. I did not realize it was that simple! I may have to try that, because I am sure the fresh stuff is the best!

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  15. excellent tip...i grew boxwood basil this year and since the leaves are so small drying them would work very well...thanks!

    alison

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  16. This is such a neat idea. I have a lot of extra basil from my garden this year. I think I'll have to try this.

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  17. Hi Ellen,
    I have not used commercial Basil in years. I always grow and peserve my own. Your recipe is a very good method that really works. Hope you have a great week end and thanks for sharing with Full Plate Thursday!
    Come back soon,
    Miz Helen

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  18. LOVE your site! I am a new follower from the Friday Blog Hop. Please stop by my site at http://psbeautyblog.blogspot.com and follow me back on Google Friend Connect and Networked Blogs. I look forward to reading more of your posts :)

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  19. Great site! New follower from Hop Along Friday!

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  20. I really need to try this! Thanks for sharing.

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  21. Thanks to "Happier than a Pig in Mud" for teaching us to ONLY microwave the leaves of the seasonings. The stems will catch on fire. This drying method works well for oregano and parsley. ~ Ellen

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  22. We have fresh basil growing that I love!! I never knew you could dry it out! Great tip!

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  23. Thank you for the lovely tutorial. Really cool.

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