Basil plant
PHOTOGRAPH BY MAGONE/GETTY

Preserve Your Basil Crop For Winter

Don't lose the sweet, pungent taste of your homegrown spice.

Ann McCormick July 23, 2015

Basil is delicious and easy to grow, but it's only fresh in the garden for a short time—and you often get a lot of it all at once. If you want to avoid letting it all go to waste, here are three easy methods of preservation.

Drying
Don't tie basil stalks together or hang them to dry as you might other herbs. Instead, pinch or snip the leaves from the stems and place them on a screen or absorbent towel. Stir daily and allow them to dry until crackly. Store in an airtight container.

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Freezing
Clip the leaves from the stems and rinse. Then, spread them on a counter to air-dry for 30 minutes. Loosely layer leaves in a storage bag, and freeze.

Basil Pureé
Clip the leaves from the stems and rinse; spread them on a counter to air-dry for 30 minutes. Place the leaves in a blender or food processor, process for a few seconds to coarsely chop the leaves. Add enough water to form a slush and process again. Pour this liquid into ice cube trays and freeze. Once frozen, pop the cubes out of the trays and store them in a freezer container for later use.