Thursday, September 6, 2012

Freezing Basil

When life gives you basil, make pesto.

When life gives you more basil, freeze it. No washing necessary (unless it's really dusty or coated with earth). Just strip the leaves from the stems, stuff them in a freezer bag, squeeze out all the air you can, and pop into the freezer. A few hours - or days - later, pull out the bag and crumple it with your hands.

If you open it up, this is what you'll see:


Put it back in the freezer as quickly a possible, to minimise condensation (which will re-freeze and turn into ice crystals).

More basil? (It does have a wonderful habit of growing back.) Pull out the bag and repeat the process, stuffing the new basil down on top of the old.


Come winter, you'll have a goodly supply of fresh-frozen basil to be lavishly sprinkled on pizzas or garlic bread, tossed into soup, added to eggs or potatoes, even made into pesto. A souvenir of summer in every bite.


P.S. This technique works well for parsley, too.

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16 comments:

  1. I LOVE basil, I'm not sure why I've never grown it as we all love pesto in this family and have it on pasta a few times a month. I do buy the little plants in the supermarket but for some reason unlike other plants, they don't actually grow.....one day when I get organised I will grow it, Mark my words.

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    1. I shall look for the flourishing-basil photos on your blog.... :)

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  2. What a great idea! Thanks for the tip... basil just has that special aroma that makes the simplest of dishes into something special! Have a lovely weekend, ours should be sunny and I'm really enjoying the cooler temperatures after our prolonged and tiring heat-wave.

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    1. Thank you, Sandra. It's cooler here too. :)

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  3. Excellent. Not good to have those ding-dang ice crystals in such frozen stuff. :-)

    Gentle hugs,
    "Auntie"

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    1. Well, they do tend to accumulate after a while - but the basil still tastes good. :)

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  4. Great idea, have a wonderful weekend,
    Meredith

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  5. I bet this would work with mint, too... and maybe rosemary... Yum!!!

    OT: I was making something or other the other day, and I thought I was putting in a sprig of rosemary. Turned out to be lavender!!! Didn't ruin the meal, but I see why they use that more often with fruits than veggies. Nevertheless, I didn't know you could season with lavender!!! Bet you can freeze those fragrant leaves, too...

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    1. Yes, I forgot to mention that Mr. M is freezing mint leaves this year. (What a chilly combination - frozen and mint!) :)

      Lavender is very tasty - a favourite herb blend from our local spice store (Penzeys Spices), "Herbes de Provence", features lavender. Mr. M also drinks lavender tea - which is really an infusion - every night.

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  6. Great tip - thankyou! I have a surplus just now and have been shoving it into a jar in the freezer - much more sensible to use a bag and crush it once frozen. Juliex

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    1. You're welcome, Julie. Although I suppose a jar is more earth-friendly. :)

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  7. Wow, I didn't realize basil could be frozen. That's a great tip!

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