How many spices do you have on your shelf that have been there for more than six months? Well they're just taking up unnecessary space because spices only hold their oils for roughly six months! Crazy, huh?
A couple of weeks ago, I came across an excess amount of fresh basil. I didn't want to waste it, so I decided to dry it and use it for my spaghetti sauce! The process was actually super simple and not labor intensive at all.
- Spice container
- Cutting board
If you're picking your own spice, you'll want to read up about the proper way to harvest. We just cut the whole stock of the basil plant (we had that much). But if you're just harvesting a few leaves of basil, you'll want to prune it right above a set of leaves . Pruning is very important for the plants health. Try to not let your basil flower.
But if you have flowers, you'll want to get rid of them before you eat the plant!
After that, you'll just spread your leaves out and wait for them to dry. I just laid them on a paper towel on my kitchen countertop. These need to stay there for at least three days and probably no longer than one week. (Another way to dry would be to bundle the stems and hang the herb upside down! This is a very effective way of drying.)