I cannot express to you enough how much having a home garden has been wonderful for the Vanderveens. Not only do we enjoy the fresh food right out of our yard, but the kids enjoy helping the plants grow: feeding them, fertilizing, and weeding our little garden. Best of all, there is literally an abundance of spiritual metaphors to pull out of gardening which Clint and I love to share with our children. I cannot recommend this enough to all of my readers. If you’re thinking about starting a garden but not sure how to begin, we’ll be happy to help. Our garden isn’t perfect, but it has sure served it purpose well!
Today I want to share with you how amazing it was to harvest a huge amount of basil and oregano and how we’re storing it for winter months. It’s said, with plants such as these, that for every leaf you cut back, 2 more grow in their place. So we’ve been trying to stay on top of clipping these delightful herbs, and yesterday we took in a huge amount.
To store basil and oregano, we first removed the stems, washed the leaves well and then allowed the water to dry off. Next we placed the leaves into the food processor, and gave short, gentle blasts while adding olive oil (which keeps the leaves from turning black when freezing). We then removed the contents and froze them in portions for winter cooking. For the basil, we happened to have a cake pop form which worked well (but ice cube trays would work too). For the oregano we just spread the mixture across the bottom of a pan, and once totally frozen we cut it into cubes , and packaged each individually. Now in the winter time, when I’m making a pasta sauce, I can place the frozen cubes right into the hot pan, and allow them to melt down as I add other ingredients. Buying fresh basil or oregano from the store is extremely costly, so we’re very happy to have this fresh stash that cost so little to start up!
The Vanderveen Team
Maxwell South Star Realty
Phone: 403.253.5678 Fax: 403.592.6736