As much as I hate to admit it, I’m a lazy homesteader. If there’s an easy way out, I’ll take it and I won’t even feel guilty about it. Well, maybe a little guilty but I get over it pretty quick. Fall is the busiest time of year for anyone trying to live a farm girl lifestyle because the bounty of the season requires a lot of attention. Kind of like my children only tastier. It’s exhausting just thinking about all the produce in my garden conspiring against me to ripen at exactly the same time. It can be canned, pickled, dried, dehydrated or frozen and since freezing is the easiest, it’s the method I often choose. Sometimes it’s a choice between freezing it or throwing it in the compost pile.
When it comes to our beloved herb garden, freezing herbs is actually my preferred method. Dried herbs are great but some dishes just scream for something fresher. It’s fast and easy to freeze any type of herb and the only implements you need are several ice cube trays you can pick up at the dollar store.
Chop the herb very finely and put it in the slots of the ice cube tray, pressing down to compact. Each slot should hold about two tablespoons of the chopped herb. Cover with extra-virgin olive oil until herbs are completely submerged. This will take about two tablespoons of EVOO per slot. Cover tray with aluminum foil and freeze. Once frozen, remove herb cubes from tray and put in a zip-lock freezer bag. These herb-and-oil cubes work great for any recipe that calls for olive oil such as One Pot Pasta.
I often do the same method but use water instead of olive oil. The herb and water cubes are perfect for water-based recipes like soups, stews and chillis.
NOTE: Make sure you label the bag with the name of the herb, measurements of herbs and type of liquid. Keep each herb in a separate bag.
I promised you a recipe and here it is. This is my favorite citrus marinade that I use on fish and sometimes chicken. The recipe calls for one tablespoon of dill (for fish) or tarragon (for chicken) so when I freeze those two herbs I make the cubes with one tablespoon of the herb and one tablespoon of oil per slot. Then I just have to thaw out one cube for the recipe. No more running to the store to buy fresh herbs that just go bad in the fridge. You’re welcome.
- 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
- 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
- 2 tsp. grated lemon peel
- 1 clove garlic, smashed and chopped
- 2 tbsp. finely chopped green onion (or substitute regular onion)
- 1 tbsp. finely chopped fresh dill (for fish)
- 1 tbsp. finely chopped fresh tarragon (for chicken)
- 1/2 tsp. salt
- 1/2 tsp. pepper
- Mix all ingredients together in a blender and pulse a few time to combine.
- Pour marinade over fish or chicken.
- Cover with plastic wrap and put in refrigerator for at least 1 hour.
- Cook as desired.
1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
2 tsp. grated lemon peel
1 clove garlic, smashed and chopped
2 tbsp. finely chopped green onion (or substitute regular onion)
1 tbsp. finely chopped fresh dill (for fish)
1 tbsp. finely chopped fresh tarragon (for chicken)
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. pepper
Mix all ingredients together in a blender and pulse a few time to combine. Pour marinade over fish or chicken. Cover with plastic wrap and put in refrigerator for at least 1 hour. Cook as desired. Enjoy. Makes enough marinade to cover 1-1.5 lbs. fish or chicken.