by Texas Homesteader ~
I’ve discovered my favorite herb to cook with is Thyme. It’s so versatile and it adds a delicious flavor to so many different dishes. I planted Thyme in my edible landscape several years ago.
They grew into tiny bushes and I cooked with fresh thyme often. But the drought took my plants so reluctantly I decided to buy jars of thyme for awhile instead of replacing those plants.
I was absolutely shocked when I saw the price of thyme in the stores. Although you can buy a large container of cinnamon for .99 or less, thyme was closer to $4 if it could even be found in our smaller rural stores!
Buying A Thyme Plant Instead
Then I came across a small thyme plant they were trying to get rid of at the end of the season. I grabbed it thinking maybe I could grow it in a kitchen windowsill. The Thyme grew scraggly in no time and I knew I was going to lose it.
In desperation I pulled a single rooted stem and stuck it in an outside cement planter on our south-facing porch and it thrived there all winter! Now finally it’s time to harvest and preserve some of it.
I took out the kitchen shears and lopped off the stems leaving about 1/2 the height of the plant. I brought the stems in and after a quick rinse I started pulling off the leaves.
I’ll keep the leaves in a wide bowl that I will leave on my kitchen counter. Each day I’ll fluff them to ensure even drying and they’ll be ready to store in about one to two weeks.
After about thirty minutes of pulling leaves I decided that was too much of a labor-intense way to harvest them so I decided to dry the rest of the stems first then crush the leaves from the stems after all is dried.
Hopefully I’ll also be able to harvest and preserve more throughout the year as well as using it fresh. I want to make sure I keep this thyme container FULL!
Even Easier Herb Drying
Oftentimes I’ll use the even LAZIER cook’s Herb-Drying Option. I’ll harvest bundles of my favorite herbs toward the end of the season. I always have thyme of course, but also oregano, sage and basil. They’re the herbs I use most often in my cooking.
I’ll give them a quick rinse and shake most of the water off of them. Then I’ll spread the bundles lightly and allow them to air dry a bit.
Finally I’ll bundle them up again and with cotton string (ie: the string leftover from our bags of feed) I’ll tie them up on the hooks RancherMan’s installed for me in my kitchen.
There they’ll stay for the rest of the season. I could strip the dry leaves and put them into small jars for use. But I really like the way they look hanging here. And I’m using them pretty much every day.
So most times I just leave them here until it’s time to harvest another bundle. Decorative functionality, y’all!
With my shock over the price of dried herbs purchased in the stores, the lesson has been learned! I’ll grow & dry my own home-grown Thyme as well as other herbs.
Preserving The Harvest Posts
- Making Tomato Sauce
- Canning Fresh Asparagus
- Water-Bath Canning Pears In Light Syrup
- Canning Garden Corn
- Easier Dill Pickles
- One Quart At A Time Refrigerator Pickles
- Keeping Garlic
- Preserving The Harvest: Oregano
- Accumulating Okra When Your Harvest Is Small
…And Much MORE!
- Preserving The Harvest: Dehydrating Fresh Carrots
- Dehydrating Fresh Pumpkin For Easy Storage
- Dehydrating Spinach To Enjoy All Year Long
- Using A Dehydrator To Preserve Fresh Onions
- Dehydrating & Storing Cabbage
- Bell Pepper Dehydration
- Using A Solar Oven To Dehydrate Garden Produce
- How To Make Dehydrated Blueberry Powder
- Dehydrating Plums
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