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Old 05-27-2010, 09:34 PM   #1
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Dried herbs/Fresh herbs

I know what I like, but there are always newbies here, and I'd like to know which herbs you find acceptable dry (we don't all live in places where you can have fresh year 'round) and which are "don't bother".

Personally, I don't bother with dried basil or parsley. They don't taste anything like the fresh. Heck make that they don't taste at all, to me.

On the other hand, dill, oregano, sage and thyme are just fine, in some cases better, dry.

Bay leaves are weird. To me they actually taste stronger fresh than dried!

All a matter of opinion, feel free to disagree!

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Old 05-28-2010, 10:37 AM   #2
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I definitely agree with you re: dried basil, parsley, & bay leaf. Not worth using. To those I'll also add dried tarragon, which dissipates so quickly that unless you plan on using the whole jar within a month or two, it's worthless.

Not a big fan of dried dill, especially since supermarkets carry the fresh year-round, but oregano, sage, & thyme are definitely terrific dried, & as you mentioned, frequently superior in dried form. Marjoram is another herb that is excellent dried.
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Old 05-28-2010, 11:35 AM   #3
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Agree with dried basil and parsley. My solution to having perpetual supply of fresh parsley is to use curly-leaf parsley, wash and dry it, chop it up finely, store in a container, and stick in the freezer. Every time a recipe calls for chopped parsley, I just use a fork to scrape off some frozen parsley directly into the food. Perfectly green color and fresh flavor is retained. No more throwing out of wilted unused parsley.
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Old 05-28-2010, 12:12 PM   #4
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In general I only prefer fresh herbs and sometimes I dish out big bucks to get them in off season.

To me here are the ones that are acceptable dried:

Rosemary
Thyme
Oregano
Mint

The ones that are absolutely not:

Cilantro
Parsley
Basil
Dill

I can't imagine them adding any flavor to the end product so I would skip it rather than use it for the heck of it.
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Old 05-28-2010, 12:19 PM   #5
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How funny, basil is one herb that I don't mind dried. I'm not going to use it in pesto that way, but I have issues with fresh basil so I have accepted that dried is likely my best option.

I loathe and despise dried rosemary unless its ground into poultry seasoning. I don't mind fresh though.

Dried lavender is ok in sachets, but fresh is LOVELY for cooking with.
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Old 05-28-2010, 01:19 PM   #6
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I do dried parsley and basil

I have an herbed bread/roll recipe that calls for dried parsley and oregano and really needs both those dried herbs.


and one of my favorite pasta recipe is to cook pasta, saute onion in olive oil, add a liberal amount (1/4 c.+) dried basil and sprinkle with mozzarella cheese.

I make my own pesto and have lotsa fresh basil, but dried basil is always in my cabinet.
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Old 05-28-2010, 01:44 PM   #7
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I get whatever I can :) I have a herb garden, so I like fresh when it is available, but when I cant, fresh herbs are just too expensive for me ^_-. I do like the taste of fresh for most herbs.
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Old 05-29-2010, 10:08 AM   #8
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Hmmmm... I can't reproduce your name, don't know how to do pictograms. Florida (where I lived for 6 years, and where my family lives, now) was not easy for some herbs. It would get way to hot for many herbs, they'd "bolt" before you would get more than one meal's worth. Here I have to contain mint-related herbs or they'll take over the entire garden (i.e., various kinds of mint, and lemon balm is one of them). When I lived in Florida it was difficult to get mint to live through the summer at all.
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Old 05-29-2010, 10:27 AM   #9
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I don't expect dried basil or parsley to taste like they do fresh, but I think they have their uses - I mix dried basil with flour, S&P to make a dredge for pan-fried fish that's really good. And I have a recipe for Lebanese kibbee (spiced ground beef patties) that calls for dried mint.

Otherwise, I pretty much agree - in general, the woody herbs are good dried while the soft-stemmed herbs not so much. To preserve a lot of basil, I whir them in a blender with water and freeze in ice-cube trays. They go great into soups and sauces during the winter. I also make a lot of pesto and freeze it.
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Old 05-29-2010, 11:04 AM   #10
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@ Claire: Really? I grew some mint a while ago and it took over half my yard o_o. I live in Spring Hill, so it's a little cooler than the rest, but not much :)
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