Since summer is over here in Edmonton, and it’s been snowing/trying to snow the past while, I thought now would be a good time to share a couple of easy ways to save fresh, delicious herbs to enjoy throughout the winter before you can’t find them as easily at markets and the grocery store. I won’t be mentioning pesto in this post since I have this one that explains the basic methodology you’d need to use – BUT, pesto can be frozen and is another great option.
1. Infused Oils
Recently, I was invited to dinner at my good friends’ Bridgette and Nick’s house. I always ask, can I bring anything? And they always say no, and put on these amazing dinners (seriously, the best). This last time, I was determined to bring a a small gift that brought a little of me to them- so I made them something that I love, rosemary infused olive oil! I love to make it with garlic for just myself, and roast potatoes with it, but I kept it more neutral not knowing what they’d like to cook it with. A few days later I got a message saying that it was great, which is always the best. If you’d like to try to make it yourself, simply pour half a cup of olive oil in a microwave safe dish, add a sprig of rosemary (or any herb you like) and microwave it for 40 seconds. Voila! You can also use a herb like parsley or basil and put it in a food processor- once it is a paste, put it into a silicon ice cube tray and top with olive oil to keep it from turning brown- you can freeze it this way!
2. Compound Butters
Not going to lie, this post where I made steaks for a date is the last time I’ve cooked for a date. Dates don’t happen very often in my world! But, the herby butter I used was delicious and can be used in so many things- basting steaks, starting risottos, making browned butter, and to kick up mashed potatoes! You can mix it in, roll it into a log, and then freeze it- just cut off what you want when you want it!
3. Stock Making/ Freezer Prep
If you’ve read about my crockpot stock, then you know I like to make my own out of kitchen scraps and frozen chicken carcasses from rotisserie chickens. One of the things that makes stock so, so good is fresh herbs, and they can be super expensive once the summer has left us. So, I tend to use my crockpot to make a few batches in the summer and fall to save for the winter.
What are your favorite ways to enjoy herbs all year long? Let me know!