The lines have fallen to me in pleasant places; Indeed, my heritage is beautiful to me. ~ Psalm 16:6 nasb

Monday, July 14, 2014

Drying Oregano for Long Term Storage

June 2.

Time to head back out to my front yard flower/herb garden to harvest my oregano.  It has become a literal bush!  I snip the stalks off close to their base, keeping them in an orderly pile as I snip.  I couldn't cut out a whole lot, since I don't have a lot of room on my homemade drying rods, so I'm going to do this little by little.  I hope.


While I was at it, I snipped a few sprigs of English thyme (below).  I don't use much thyme throughout the year, but I bought this plant hoping it would provide enough for me not to have to purchase dried thyme at the store any more.



Thyme sprig.

In my colander below, you can also see a few green leaves just to the left of the kitchen shears. Those leaves are French sorrel, a surprisingly lemony-tasting herb leaf that is awesome chopped into a salad, or served with fish.  That's a new herb in this garden, too!


Inside, I started the tying pricess with the thyme here, but it's the same with the oregano.  Once you rinse all the herbs off with cold water, and dry them (leave them on a towel on the counter to dry a bit), tie them in small bunches with string.  I lost my garage-sale-find cheap regular good-ol' string, so I'm using this jute stuff.  Not the best but it works.  When you're cutting lengths of string, make sure each length is long enough to then tie up to a hanging rod for drying.


Then you just need a place to hang each bundle to dry!  For me, this would be my basement.  Just look over there at the "guts" of our house!  Fernando rigged up this drying rod contraption for me to use to dry my herbs.  Since I don't have enough string to tie each bundle to the lengthwise rod, I made a "clothes line" from end to end of each hanging rod, then used clothespins to clip each bundle to the clothes line.  Innovation at work!!


Here's how I did it, picture by picture:




You can see the English thyme hanging on the string which is hanging down in between the two rods, lol--whatever worked at this point!

I usually leave the bundles in place for a week or two (sometimes longer if I forget, which happens frequently...!)   I'll add a link to this post in a few weeks, when I actually process the dried herbs for storage, so you can see the rest of how to do it.  Ciao for now!


Back to life,
Christine

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