There’s no question that fresh herbs call to me, maybe they do to you, too. To call it a fatal attraction is far too severe, but there’s a risky element to growing or buying fresh herbs that feels a bit similar. First, there’s the lure of aroma, flavor, nature’s greenness, inspiration. But then comes the pressure. Questions come up on how to use an abundant garden harvest or a prolific potted window plant or even a far too large bunch for sale in the supermarket.
This year I received beautiful, lush basil bunches in my CSA box for three weeks in a row. I didn’t want to waste a single leaf. My family are nor lovers of pesto, tomato sauce, or mozzarella salads. I made some but as time when on thought about preserving, which holds challenges of its own. I dried some, but then turned to basil sugar and basil salt. Both salt and sugar when blended with fresh herbs will absorb a good amount of the plant’s moisture. After combining almost equal parts of the herb and salt or sugar in a food processor or spice grinder, allow the mixture to dry for a while. This blend will last in the refrigerator for much longer than a fresh herb would last and can be substituted for salt or sugar almost anywhere the flavors make sense.