For thousands of years, dry rosemary and other aromatic herbs have gradually taken over a small place in people’s kitchens. To this day, there are very few foods that don’t have them as an ingredient.
But why are some of these herbs preferred dried? It’s simple: because the leaves are much easier to keep in jars and put them in your kitchen cupboard.
So, if you want to master the art of drying rosemary, keep reading. In this article, we’ll explain it to you.
The 4 most effective ways how to dry rosemary
Aromatic and full of flavor, rosemary is one of the strongest and most popular herbs today. Unlike many others, this herb loses only a little flavor when dried, making it a great choice for storing at home.
In today’s article, we’ll show you different ways how to dry rosemary. You’ll realize how easy and convenient this process is. Let’s begin!
1- Drying rosemary using the hanging method
The first method for drying rosemary leaves is to hang them. It’s simple and yet done in 5 easy steps. Moreover, you will not need to use a kitchen or an oven as the only thing to do is hang it up and let nature do its thing.
To proceed, you’ll need scissors, a thread, a sheet of waxed paper, fresh rosemary branches, and a plastic container in which to store it.
Once these elements are gathered, you can start:
- With garden shears, cut about 8 rosemary branches of the same size as the plant. Keep in mind that the best time to do this is during the morning
- Now with a thread or a pair of rubber bands, tie the branches’ base in the shape of a “bush.” So that it’s easier to hang it
- On a wall with a hook or nail, hook the thread and hang the rosemary twigs in a cool, dry, and well-ventilated place inside your house for about two weeks. You can try placing it on the porch, attic, or in a pantry
- Every day or two, turn the branches over to have them dry on both sides. You’ll do this until the rosemary loses flexibility in either the stems or the leaves
- Once it’s scorched, place it on a wax paper sheet while separating the stems from the leaves. Now keep your dried rosemary in a hermetically sealed container and put it in the kitchen cabinet
And c’est fini, with these 5 simple steps, you will have your dried rosemary branches ready to be cut up and added to all your meals.
But as we mentioned from the beginning, there are more methods you can try until you find the one that suits you best.
2- How to dry rosemary in the microwave?
If you’re looking for a way to dry that rosemary sitting in your garden but you only have a microwave, don’t worry because that’s practically all you need.
Using the microwave for this task is not only effective, but super easy.
To begin with, go to your garden and get some fresh rosemary twigs. The ideal time to do this is mid-morning because if you harvest the rosemary very early, these could be covered with dew. On the contrary, if harvested too late, the plant could wither in the sun.
Ok so once you’ve gathered them, you’ll have to carry out the following steps:
- Once the branch has been previously washed, pull out the rotten leaves. (or those that are not in good condition) by pulling strongly on it and separating it from the stem
- When the rosemary is clean and without any damaged leaves, put them on a paper napkin and cover it with another napkin on top. When everything is ready, you’ll put them in the microwave and leave them for about 2 minutes.
- Check approximately every 30 seconds to make sure it doesn’t burn
- Afterward, take them out and leave them to rest for a few minutes. When scorched, you can store them in a dark container away from heat and the dark. Remember to label the container accordingly so that you remember what it is
And that’s it! You will have your dry rosemary ready to use and prepared in a simple way just by using a microwave. Be careful when using this method, if too much heat is applied, the rosemary may lose most of it’s properties and taste.
The important thing to remember is: when you take it out of the microwave, it must feel crunchy in your hands.
3- how to dry rosemary in the oven?
The third method or way of drying rosemary is by putting the twigs in the kitchen oven. And as in the previous method, it is much quicker than waiting for days to pass. Unless, of course, you’re not in any hurry.
If you decide to go this route, then you’ll need a lettuce drainer, fresh rosemary sprigs, a baking tray, and a jar where you’ll store the dry rosemary. Do the following steps:
- With abundant cold water, rinse the rosemary well to remove all possible dirt. Then, place it in a lettuce drainer to eliminate humidity, and with the help of a knife or with your own hands, remove the withered leaves
- Once the twigs are cut in the same size, distribute them in an oven tray with parchment paper
- While you finish filling the tray with the rosemary sprigs, preheat the oven to the minimum temperature. When the tray is ready, place it on the oven’s op rack until the stems break easily. This will take about 2-4 hours
- When the indicated time has passed, take out the tray and let it cool down at room temperature for a few minutes. Once cooled, put the edges of the paper together to make a funnel so that you can pass the dried rosemary into a glass jar
- Once in the jar, all you have to do now is close it well and store it in a dry place with no light exposure
This is, without a doubt, an excellent way to dry rosemary branches using only the oven. Although some other herbs get affected by heat, rosemary does not.
It will retain its aroma and taste, making the oven an excellent way to have this herb dried in a few hours without losing its quality.
4- Dry rosemary with a food dehydrator
The advantage of using dehydrators is that food can be easily preserved without going through the refrigerator. This is perfect for dry rosemary.
To dry rosemary with this homemade method, you’ll need to perform only 3 simple steps. That’s right; this method is the simplest of the 4 presented here.
To do this, you’ll only need to do the following:
For starters, rinse the rosemary with abundant water, shake it slightly, and eliminate humidity excess with a vegetable drainer.
Then, when they are dry, distribute them in the dehydrator trays. It should be at low power (between 35 and 40ºC, 95-150ºF). Then, let the magic happen until the rosemary stems break easily in your fingers.
When the rosemary is dry and brittle, place it in a transparent glass jar and cover it well.
And you’re all set! With these easy 4 steps, you will have dry rosemary ready, always available when you need it.
Why should you dry rosemary and what is it good for?
We created the following section where we’ll show you where and how to use dried rosemary.
Whenever people talk about rosemary, the first thing that comes to mind is food.
Why? It’s simple: it’s excellent for seasoning meats, such as pork, chicken, fish, and seafood, as well as soups, sauces, and many other dishes.
Thus having a variety of methods to absorb the properties of the herb easily.
Benefits of rosemary
Being a medicinal plant, it possess a great number of uses, benefits and properties, such as:
- Prevents the formation of clots and symptoms of the same as memory loss, thrombosis and heart attacks by improving blood circulation
- It’s a muscle relaxant, so it soothes muscle, bone and back pain
- As we’ll explain below, it supports hair and nails
- Increases memory and focus, relieves headaches
- Assists in liver healing
- It’s a natural stomach protector
- Relaxes menstrual cramps
- It is rich in iron, good for people who suffer anemia
- And last but not least, it possess natural aphrodisiac attributes
Chemical composition of dry rosemary
Dry rosemary has a diverse chemical composition for such an abundant herb, and it has a variety of proteins, vitamins, carbohydrates, calcium, and water, providing 335 kcal of energy.
To be more precise, we have created a table to show you the nutritional value of 100 g of dry rosemary:
So what are you waiting for? You can keep your dried rosemary for much longer. If you put it in the kitchen cabinet and other spices, it will always be within reach when you need it; be it for your next recipe or the next homemade preparation with rosemary.
Rosemary: Summary and quick facts
The fragrance of rosemary floats in the breeze, making homes nearby smell clean and fresh; in the aromatic garden, rosemary can even be pruned like a hedge when the right varieties are selected.
Some rosemary varieties are suitable for indoor pots, as long as they spend the summer basking in the sun on the patio.
These rustic, flexible plants seem almost bulletproof, but when rosemary starts turning brown, you may start to wonder, “Is my rosemary dying?
What to do when rosemary dries up?
Although brown rosemary leaves are not a good sign, they are often the first indicator of root rot on this plant.
If you heed their warning, you may be able to save your plant.
Causes of Rosemary Browning:
There are two common causes of rosemary turning brown, both caused by environmental problems that you can easily correct.
The most common is root rot, but a sudden change in the very bright light you have in a yard when you move it into the comparatively darker interior of a house can also cause this symptom.
Rosemary evolved on the rocky and steep slopes of the Mediterranean, in an environment where water is available only for a short period of time before it rolls downhill.
In these conditions, rosemary has never had to adapt to wet conditions, so it suffers terribly when planted in a garden with poor drainage or, as is often the case, overwatering.
The constant humidity causes rosemary roots to rot, resulting in the leaves turning brown and the root system shrinking.
Improving drainage or delaying watering until the top 2 inches of soil is dry to the touch is often all these plants need to thrive.
How to store rosemary
Storing the herbs properly is crucial to preserving their flavor and usefulness. Herbs like rosemary are best kept in cool, dark places—store rosemary in a tightly closed container to prevent moisture from entering and causing mold.
Dried herbs keep many times longer than fresh ones but don’t last forever. It is best to clean up unused herbs and spices twice a year to make sure they are at their best.
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