Thursday, April 25, 2013

Fun with Herbs

I found a wonderful way to freeze parsley here. I'm sure that this would work well for cilantro as well, since they are so similar in consistency. This is easy, and maintains the fresh taste of parsley that I love so much. It's also compact, so you don't need much space for storage. Here's a photo my my parsley roll. The instructions on the website are thorough.

For basil, you can just spread it out and freeze it on a flat cookie sheet. It only takes about 30 minutes, then you can throw the frozen leaves in a ziploc bag and take them out as you need them for recipes.

I also made basil pesto which I froze in a silicone ice cube tray, then popped them out and put them in a ziploc bag. You can take the frozen cubes out and throw them right in a bowl of pasta to melt it, or just leave it at room temperature while you prepare the rest of your dinner, then it's set to go. I love using pesto as a sauce for my pizza.

I love this recipe because it's adaptable. You can use as much or as little oil as you like, but be sure to use a high quality olive oil here. It really makes a difference for the flavour.

Fresh Basil Pesto
adapted from this recipe by Michael Smith

A few large handfuls fresh basil
1/2 cup or so grated Parmesan or Romano cheese
A few handfuls slivered almonds
A generous splash extra virgin olive oil
A sprinkle or two Salt and Pepper

1-2 cloves of garlic if desired

1. Toss everything into a food processor and puree until smooth. It too dry, add some more olive oil.

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