Sunday, December 4, 2011

Final harvest. Maybe.

There's still a little bit of sage in the garden and I recently pinned a recipe for some kind of squash/sage/quinoa salad, so this week's parsley harvest might not be the last.

And then there's the dill.
Volunteer dill. More than I will ever be able to use.
But back to the parsley. This is another uber-cheap easy-on-the-pocketbook foodie gift that packs a real flavor punch when added to chicken dishes, especially soups. It's also good with eggs – scrambled, omelettes, quiche, etc. Be creative with it; I find myself grabbing the jar and throwing it into just about everything.

Dried parsley has always had a place in my spice cabinet, but until I started drying fresh parsley I often felt I was wasting my money. Purchased dried parsley did little but add some green flecks to whatever dish I added it to. It certainly didn't add any flavor.

The last of the parsley.
There's a difference when you dry your own, though. It's easy to grow, too. A couple of already started plants from a nursery, planted in the spring, will yield enough fresh herb for several servings of taboulleh throughout the growing season. When you've had your fill, simply snip the remaining herbs, lay them on a cookie sheet and pop them in a very low oven for a couple hours. You can also zap them in the microwave, but I've caught it on fire doing that. I kind of like having the oven on when it's chilly outside anyway.

Dried parsley, ready to be crushed.

So now you've got your dried herb. Discard the bigger stems if you want to, but you're going to pulverize everything in the food processor next, so it isn't really necessary. Process the dried leaves for a minute or so, and then add some kosher or sea salt. I don't measure, I just eyeball it so that there's about three-fourths parsley and one-fourth salt in the food processor bowl.

Add salt, whirl some more.

Whirl it around until it's very finely ground, funnel it into a jar (I like the four-ounce Ball canning jars. And collapsible funnels.) and enjoy.

Parsley salt – ready to give. Or keep!

If I were on the ball I'd have some beautifully designed labels for you to print and adhere to the lid of the jar. But I'm not on the ball this year, in fact I'm so far behind the ball that I can't even believe I signed up to blog daily for another month. But I did, and thanks to the magic of scheduled posts I can go visiting tomorrow without having to get up at the crack of dawn to tell you how to make parsley salt before I go.

So there.


mauishopgirl said...

Love this! And can use it for basil and Italian parsley.

Thanks so much for posting!

Your herb garden looks beautiful.

S. Stauss said...

I was just wondering yesterday what to do with all of my parsley! This will make such excellent gifts! Thank you!