Alyssa Ideboen has been writing professionally since 2005. To test the potency of dried herbs, Wilkins says to "crush a pinch of herbs between your fingers and smell them." Store dried herbs and spices in a cool, dry place. Poke holes into a paper bag and place your herb leaves inside. Place the pestle in the bowl and begin grinding. Clean your spice mill or grinder after you use it by grinding a couple of crackers in it and then wiping out the container with a damp paper towel. Some recipes that call for fresh herbs also specify the equivalent dry amounts, in which case substituting dried herbs for fresh becomes a piece of cake. Before adding the herbs to the food, crush the leaves between your fingers. When you can really smell the herbs, you'll know they will … Properly dried herbs will crumble into flakes when you pinch them while over dried herbs will crush to powder. Equivalents By pressing the pestle down into the mortar, and moving it back and forth, you can grind and blend the herbs or other items for spellwork. It’s best to pick and prepare one variety of herb for drying at a time.Discard any damaged leaves. How To Dry and Grind Fresh Herbs in 4 Easy Steps. They are smokier and more intense. Once the greens aren't wet anymore, microwave between two paper towels for one minute. Tie the paper bag closed with string or bind it with a rubber band. Don't add too many herbs into the grinder at one time. Take desired dried herbs and combine with just enough hot water to moisten them. I place the closed paper bag in my pantry and when the dried herbs are needed, I just remove the amount called for and crush the herbs at that time. Herbs lend flavor to bland foods and enhance foods with stronger flavor profiles and grinding those herbs to a powder helps release the flavors. Firmly press the pestle into the bottom and sides of the bowl to crush the herbs. Store dried herbs in airtight containers as soon as they are dry so they don’t re-absorb moisture from the air. When substituting a ground herb for dried leaf herb, use about half of the amount of the dried leaf herb called for in the recipe. If you don't have one of these on hand, place the dried rosemary leaves between two sheets of waxed paper or inside a heavy-duty food storage bag and run a rolling pin across them to crush them. Or you can use a combination of both for intense flavor. Yes, if you plan on simmering or cooking it with your food (to soften the herb). You can also use this method with individual leaves. They add great flavor, are inexpensive, and are the perfect way to dress up almost any recipe. Continue crushing until you have a fine, even powder. McVicar thinks dried sage works especially well in meatloaf. Buy small packages of herbs you don't use often so you don't waste them. Dried herbs can be combined to make your own personalized seasoning mixes. Each recipe will usually specify whether you should use fresh herbs (measurements typically shown in spoons or sprigs) or dried herbs. Since dried herbs are packed with flavor, every tablespoon of fresh herbs is equivalent to a teaspoon of dried herbs. Use a spice mill or a coffee mill reserved for processing herbs and spices to pulverize dried rosemary into a powder. If you still have herbs after 6 months, it’s best to store in an airtight container. Leave the herb in the dark to dry for four weeks. How to Store Dried Herbs . Place the herbs into small, airtight containers, and keep in a cool, dark place like a cupboard. Spread the paste evenly over the desired area. Herbs are known for their fragrance and flavor, which come from the oils that evaporate when the leaves are crushed. This helps release volatile oils and increases the herb's fragrance and flavor. Take the hanger away from the dark area and place it on an even surface. Place your herbs, spices, or other dry goods into the bowl and hold it steady with one hand. Put the hanger-attached herbs in a dark area like a closet. Dried herbs are a must for any quick cooking pantry. 1 tablespoon fresh herbs = 1 teaspoon dried herbs. Store dried herbs and spices in a cool, dry place. Glass jars or metal tins with screw top lids work well, as do jars with clamp on lips (Fido style). Make sure they are clean and dry, then place them into a paper bag or cotton bag to keep the dust off of them. For roots, it’s best to use a powdered form. If you are working with dried ground herbs like ground ginger which is going to be even more potent than the dried flaky herbs, the general ratio is 4 to 1 or four parts fresh to one part dried. We recommend using a drawer near (not next to) the stove so the herbs stay cool and are kept out of sunlight. To preserve the most flavor, store whole leaves in the refrigerator and crush them as you need them when cooking. Crumble the dried herbs with clean fingers or crush them in a mortar and pestle, discarding any hard stems that you may find. Pat them dry with a paper towel. Or crush small amounts of dried rosemary in a mortar and pestle. Crushing the frozen leaves between your fingers will release more of the volatile oils and help make the herbs more fragrant when added to your recipes. She has contributed to several print and online publications, including "Lexington Woman" and "Global Business" magazines. This is because, when you dry the plants in dark or shady areas, there is a lesser chance of oil loss. We recommend using a drawer near (not next to) the stove so the herbs stay cool and are kept out of sunlight. Step 4. Just make sure everything is well labeled so you know what's what. For low-moisture herbs, dry them in the dark with good air circulation and temperatures below 110°F. You can also leave some herbs whole, which helps them retain their aromatic oils better. I like to store them on top of my refrigerator while they dry out. Preheat oven to 80°C. To maximize flavour, … After drying the plants, do not allow them get wet again. This is to retain excellent flavor in the herb… William Reavell / Dorling Kindersley / Getty Images. Step 1 Rinse the basil leaves briefly under cool, running water. Use your favorites to create your own personal blends. Another great tip is to store your dried herbs and spices in the freezer, so they last much longer. Measure 2 to 4 tablespoons of dried herbs into the container of a coffee grinder or spice mill. How To Use Your Homemade Dried Herbs. Dried herbs are best when used with oil (or butter, fat) or water - this way they can infuse the oil or cooking liquid. You should be able to loosen the leaves by running your hand down the stem. First, separate the leaves from stems and wash the parts you want to save. If possible, distill them as soon as they dry up. When they’re completely dried, the leaves will be crisp and crush easily in the palm of your hand. Don’t crush the rosemary just to overcrowd the area. Crushed herbs tend to lose their potency much faster than whole leaves. Simply strip the best leaves from the stems and lay them in a single layer on the drying rack. Most healthy recipes you find in cookbooks and on the internet will require that you use some herbs, both for culinary and health reasons. Harvest and wash herbs, pat dry with a clean tea towel. The time varies depending on the type of herbs – it can take an hour or two – but you can get a feel for their dryness by turning them over frequently. Ideboen holds a Bachelor of Arts in business management and communication from Judson University.