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  1. #1

    Default Drying herbs... in the microwave?

    Ive been practicing different techniques to dry my excess basil.... hanging it upside down in the pantry, trying to sun-dry it on a baking sheet in the sun.... and now Im trying the microwave method... which works but Im not sure about the quality or energy efficientness.
    (I dont have a dehydrator, and probably wont be buying one anytime in the near future. And I dont want to freeze it because.... small baggies of mysterious green cubes... even labeled... just isnt going to work for me.)

    There seems to be some shame though, with using the microwave, and Im not sure that it doesnt destroy some vital part of the flavor which will be revealed later.

    Does anyone else microwave their herbs to dry them? Is there another (free) method of preserving herbs that isnt so prominently featured on youtube?
    Homeschooling DS13, DS6.

    Atheist.

    My spelling was fine, then my brain left me.

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  3. #2

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    Cookie sheet, inside your hot car, on the dashboard. You're Welcome!
    Homeschooling two sons (14 and 16) from day one. Atheist.
    Eclectic, Slackschooler covering 8th and 10th grades this year.

  4. #3
    Senior Member Arrived ejsmom's Avatar
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    I do it in the oven at 150 - 175 F until dry. Length of time depends on the herb/flower. Keep it under 200 F and you'll be fine. For cooking, I also do frozen herbs, particularly basil. I rough chop the leaves, then mix with a bit of olive oil (or water or broth) until I have a loose paste/mush. Then portion and freeze in extra ice cube trays. When frozen, I put them in a freezer bag. I grab one or two to put into soups, stews, melt into pasta dishes, and so on, as needed.
    homeschooling one DS, age 13.

  5. #4

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    Drying herbs... in the microwave?
    So this is just under 3 hours in the car.
    Temperature = 163* per infrared thermometer.
    image.jpeg

    Its a little brown... i guess I overcooked it?

    But my car sure smells nice!

    I will try again with next weeks trimmings. Watching them a little more closely!

    Its like the oven, but FREE!
    Homeschooling DS13, DS6.

    Atheist.

    My spelling was fine, then my brain left me.

  6. #5

    Default

    I think it's gonna end up brown, no matter. Crumble it up and throw it in tomato sauce....see what happens.

    I think 165 degrees is what my dehydrator suggests for herbs....I'd have to check.

    I suppose free is a matter of opinion, but at least now your vehicle is a true multi-tasker. You know, that might be an interesting marketing ploy. I can hear the mom's now....."My new Honda mini-van has an entertainment system, gps, wi-fi, vacuum AND herb dehydrator. Standard!!!"
    Homeschooling two sons (14 and 16) from day one. Atheist.
    Eclectic, Slackschooler covering 8th and 10th grades this year.

  7. #6

    Default

    Drying herbs... in the microwave?
    The microwave ones come out green... and still basilish.

    image.jpeg
    (These were from a few weeks and different trials ago.)

    The car ones have lost their fragrance, too. I suspect I overcooked them. I hope I have those leaves worth of fragrance wafting around my car for the next few days.

    Or maybe I should try to make essential oils?

    Tomorrow, though, I will car-dry some mint. And check on it frequently.

    ETA: Does the herb need to be covered?
    Homeschooling DS13, DS6.

    Atheist.

    My spelling was fine, then my brain left me.

  8. #7

    Default

    Maybe the color is a sun-bleaching effect? Heck if I know. But I DID get you to dry herbs in your car, so why stop listening to me now!!! LOL!!!! Let's see what else I can get you to try
    Homeschooling two sons (14 and 16) from day one. Atheist.
    Eclectic, Slackschooler covering 8th and 10th grades this year.

  9. #8

    Default

    Well it did work to dry them. Like an oven, but portable.

    And I wasnt going to take the burned up leaves and eat em, no matter what you suggested.

    I use the cookie sheet in the sun for dill, and it worked beautifully. Not so much with the basil, but Its dawned on me that I cant just leave it out ALL DAY.

    Imma keep with the cardehydrator.
    Homeschooling DS13, DS6.

    Atheist.

    My spelling was fine, then my brain left me.

  10. #9

    Default

    You can hang dry or even dry in your vehicle on the dash.

    Dry Herbs In Your Car: Frugal Food Preservation

    Hang Dry Herbs: Frugal Food Preservation

    You can dehydrate in your oven on a lower temperature and the door cracked, but I honestly find that to be a pricey way to do it.
    Farming, homeschooling, and living simply in Michigan's U.P. www.uppastured.com

  11. #10

    Default

    The Alton Brown method!

    Drying Herbs Video : Food Network

    Buy ones that go in yours and I bet that you could still use them once they were used for drying herbs. No money wasted! Though, I do wonder if the smell would seep into the filters...

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Drying herbs... in the microwave?