It’s that time again, summer! Time of herbs, herbs, and more herbs. We were gifted an oregano plant earlier this year and despite only being May, we have more Oregano than even a family of our size can handle.
Yesterday I decided to give the oregano bush (because it’s not really a plant at this point!) a trim. We don’t use oregano nearly as much as we do other herbs so I knew I had to preserve it. I didn’t want to do the freeze in oil or water trick, while it worked well for basil I grew a while back, I threw much of it out after a year because our basil was so prolific all year long and it just didn’t get used.
I decided that drying was the way to go but I was left with a dilemma: HOW?
We don’t own a dehydrator. I have hung herbs to dry before but they always ended up getting moldy because of the humidity. I decided that the oven was my best bet, and even if I ruined them it would be ok because we have so much oregano.
Well guess what?? I didn’t ruin the oregano, in fact, it turned out so perfectly I decided to share. I know this is a no brainer to some but to those of us (*ahem*) who are relatively new to gardening, this was an a ha moment!
OK, can I just talk frankly for a minute? I feel so weird writing this post. I want you to know that I consulted THREE people (experts in the field of herbs, LOL!) to ask if this sounded and looked too much like I was talking about herb. You know, wacky Tabacky. They assured me that this all passes the “definitely not weed” test, LOL. Just so you know, these are the things that pass through my head. Now, shall we continue on without giggling like 16 year old stoners…
Step 1: Harvest your herbs
Step 2: Pull the leaves off the stem and place the stems on a baking sheet. It doesn’t have to be perfect, just do the best you can.
Step 3: Preheat your oven to the lowest setting. I set mine to warm, which is 170 degrees F.
Step 4: Put the herbs in the oven. Check on them every 15 minutes or so. The herbs are done when they’re dry enough to easily crumble between your fingers.
Step 5: Place a plate under your hands and roll the dried herbs between your palms. Rolling the dried herbs will help remove any remaining stem pieces. Store your herbs in a glass container to use all year long! According to Still Tasty dried oregano will last 1-3 years.