We live in Los Angeles, a sprawling city where lemon, lime and orange trees pop up on every lawn and rosemary bushes grow like weeds. Well, we have something to admit. There was a house in our neighborhood with six untamed rosemary bushes that had clearly been left to grow at wild abandon. So we took a few sprigs! OK, maybe a lot of sprigs. Just ripped them off with our bare hands. Now we’ve bought more than our share of fresh herbs at Trader Joe’s, Von’s and Ralph’s, so don’t judge. Our actions were probably samaritan. Those bushes needed trimming anyways! But now we have all this leftover rosemary that should surely not go to waste, so what next? Operation Waste Not!
Freezing herbs is the easiest, fastest way to ensure you always have a little flavor to toss into your winter soups, stews, brews and even cocktails. Follow the steps, and you’re good to go.
1. Wash herbs. Dry on paper towels spread on cookie sheets.
3. Place in plastic bags.
When herbs have frozen, you can rub off the leaves and use as normal. Frozen leaves can be stored in smaller, air-tight containers. We suggest using frozen herbs in foods and not as garnish. Occasionally, frozen herbs can take on a less vibrant color than their unfrozen counterparts.
Now we have frozen rosemary that’ll last a good while. If any other herbs pop up in surplus, they’ll have the same fate. Whether you harvest your own herbs, buy in bulk or pilfer from your neighbors, now you have another way to be economical and practical in the kitchen.