When I used to buy herbs, I always seemed to buy more than I needed. If I recipe called for 2 tbsp of fresh parsley, I never seemed to know what to do with the rest of the herbs, or how to keep them from wilting before I could use them up.
After much experimentation, I throw away way fewer herbs now.
Here is how to keep your herbs fresh –
For Parsley or Cilantro
When you get home from the grocery store, take the rubber band off of the bunch of herbs. Pick out all the wilted sprigs, then loosely roll the bunch of herbs in a few sheets of paper towel. Place the roll back inside of a closed ziploc bag and place in the fridge.
Every few days, take the herbs out of the refrigerator, pick out the wilted sprigs and roll the non-wilted herbs in a few new sheets of paper towel. Compost the old paper towels and your herbs will probably keep for at least a week. Make sure you put them in a spot in your fridge where they won’t accidentally get frozen.
Quick ways to use up Parsley – blend your extra parsley into a pesto with some garlic, almonds, olive oil, salt and pepper. You can also add in kale, or basil, or cilantro to the pesto if you like. Tabbouleh is a great dish to make with excess parsley, and I’ll be posting a recipe for Quinoa Tabbouleh soon.
You can also blend a handful of the parsley with an apple, lemon juice, honey, ginger, water, and blueberries for a smoothie that helps with inflammation and joint pain.
Quick ways to use up Cilantro – you can make pico di gallo with chopped onions, tomatoes, lime juice, salt, and freshly chopped cilantro.
For herbs in clam shells – pick out any wilted stems and leaves, then fold 1-2 paper towels so that they will fit inside the container. Take the herbs out the clam shell, place the folded paper towel on the bottom of the container, put the herbs on top of the paper towels and close the clam shell and place it in your fridge.
Every few days, take the herbs out, pick out the wilted bits, and replace the paper towel before placing it back in the fridge. The herbs should last a few days longer using this technique.
Quick ways to use up Mint – You can add extra mint to tabbouleh, or make a great tea with it. I like to drink mint tea in the morning as it wakes you up without caffeine, and it has a naturally sweet flavor, so you don’t need to add any sweeteners.
I usually add about 7 mint leaves and 2 mint stalks to 1.5 cups of hot water and let it steep for at least 3 minutes before drinking. I leave the mint in the tea as I drink it, but you can remove them from the cup if you like.