Learning how to harvest parsley and keep it fresh for the winter
Fresh parsley from the garden is an unforgettable aroma of hot meat and vegetable dishes, a spicy addition to salads and marinades. As the warm days come to an end, the plants produce less and less green, fragrant leaves, and soon they completely disappear under the snow. How to keep parsley fresh for the winter so that the diet rich in vitamins does not become scarce, and the menu, even in the cold season, remains as varied and healthy as possible?
In a refrigerator, at temperatures up to +6 ° C, parsley can be stored for no more than a month. At the same time, the foliage gradually loses moisture, turns yellow and withers. Parsley rhizomes are more hardy.
If the roots cleaned of leaves and soil residues are immersed in clean sand, ensure a constant flow of air and a temperature from +1 to +5 ° C, then the parsley will successfully overwinter. True, not everyone has a cellar, and during the wintering period, the rhizomes lose quite a large part of the nutrients. How to store parsley?
Today, even at home, you can use several methods and recipes on how to prepare parsley for the winter. Moreover, in all cases, the processing of greens and root crops does not affect either the taste of the products or their vitamin composition..
Is it possible to freeze parsley for the winter?
Dense parsley foliage and roots, harvested in autumn, are perfectly amenable to freezing.
The impact of cold does not violate the structure of the tissues of roots and leaves, the amount of aromatic and useful substances does not decrease at all. In addition, the method, when whole bunches or leaves are subjected to freezing, today can be considered the simplest and fastest. How to prepare parsley for the winter using this recipe?
- Pre-harvested greens are sorted out, removing dried or damaged leaves, blades of grass and foreign inclusions.
- Cut off coarse stalks unfit for food.
- The parsley is thoroughly washed and dried for about 10-15 minutes on a napkin or towel.
- Greens ready for freezing are divided into small portioned bunches, sufficient for dressing one dish.
- The foliage is wrapped in cling film or laid out in bags, then sent to the freezer.
The step-by-step photos show how to freeze parsley for the winter for the winter. If you do not expose the greens to defrosting and repeated exposure to cold, parsley is perfectly stored throughout the winter. It is important that at the time of laying, the bunches are as clean as possible, and there are no traces of water left on the surface of the leaves, which, at low temperatures, can not in the best way affect the quality of greenery..
You can judge the presence of moisture inside the bags by the way the parsley looks. If the greens were not sufficiently dried, the thawed stems will be dark green, completely lost their elasticity, drooping. High-quality greens will keep the look and structure fresh.
Do the same with parsley rhizomes. They are washed, removing small roots and foliage debris. Peeled rhizomes are cut into strips or cubes, like greens, dried and packaged in small packages. In winter, this parsley can be used in the preparation of broths, stews and other hot dishes..
How to freeze parsley for the winter: photo and description of original ways
It is not always possible to use up a whole bunch of parsley, albeit small. Is it possible to freeze parsley for the winter in even smaller portions? Yes, if you use ice cube trays, then sorted, washed and finely chopped parsley after freezing turns into fragrant cubes for seasoning broths, casseroles, stewed vegetables or pasta.
When using this method of harvesting parsley for the winter, it is important to choose the right degree of chopping the foliage..
If you use a blender, the green mass will juice and become mushy, but at the same time it perfectly fills the cells of the ice container and freezes. When manually grinding, the particles will be larger, but it is much more difficult to form a cube. Therefore, before being in the photo, freeze the parsley for the winter using this method, you will have to take care of chopping the foliage as finely as possible. In any case, such an additive to dishes fully conveys both the taste and aroma of fresh herbs..
If you want to keep almost whole leaves in cubes, then after laying out the coarsely chopped green mass into the cells, pour the contents with a small amount of water, or better with melted butter or unrefined olive oil. Frozen cubes make a great addition to grilled meats, dumplings, rice dishes and potatoes.
If desired, you can add other favorite herbs to the mixture, such as green onions, chopped garlic or bell peppers, oregano and basil..
Harvesting parsley for the winter in oil
A similar method of harvesting parsley for the winter also involves the use of oil, but already the usual, peeled sunflower oil. And in this case, a freezer is not required..
- The greens that they want to preserve must be washed, cutting off all the spoiled, dried and coarse parts of the leaves.
- After that, the parsley is dried and chopped.
- The greens are tightly placed in clean glass jars and filled with oil so that no air bubbles remain between the foliage..
When the oil covers the parsley, the jars are tightly closed and sent to the cellar or refrigerator, where the product will be stored at temperatures from +1 to +8 ° С.
How to prepare parsley for the winter: a recipe for pickling greens
Salting is one of the oldest ways to preserve the properties of the most perishable foods at a time when home refrigerators were only a dream..
Today, few people remember how to keep parsley fresh for the winter with the help of salt. Nevertheless, salt as a natural preservative perfectly preserves all the qualities of greens and prevents the development of harmful microorganisms..
For salting, clean chopped greens and grated root vegetables are suitable. For five parts by weight of plant materials, take one part of table salt. The components are mixed and laid out in clean glass jars so that there is room for the juice formed as the salt dissolves. Closed containers can be stored in the cellar or in the refrigerator, and if necessary, use the salted parsley for culinary purposes.
How to dry parsley at home
Drying herbs and rhizomes is one of the most effective ways to prepare parsley for the winter. All trace elements and vitamins remain in the finished product, the aroma practically does not change, and sometimes it becomes more saturated.
In addition, dried parsley does not require special storage conditions, it loses many times in weight and volume compared to fresh and is also convenient to use. Before parsley is dried at home, greens and root vegetables are washed, carefully and carefully dried. After drying, it will no longer be possible to separate weed inclusions, rotten and rough parts of the plant, so the raw materials are sorted out in advance, and the rhizomes are cleaned.
Parsley greens can be dried as a whole leaf together with the top of the stem, or in separate small pieces. Before drying, root vegetables are cut into thin circles or small cubes. You can dry parsley, like other garden crops, in the open air, under gauze, in a microwave oven, special drying or in the oven, at a temperature not higher than +60 ° C. If the air is hot, there is a risk of burning the greens and losing their beneficial properties. You can determine the quality of dry herbs by how parsley looks..
If the initially green grass has acquired a yellowish or brown hue, the temperature regime was violated during drying..
In order for the loss of moisture by the leaves and pieces of root crops to go more evenly and faster, from time to time the raw materials are gently agitated. How to store parsley after drying?
At the end of the process, dry parsley is scattered over glass jars with tight-fitting lids or bags with an inner foil layer. Such packaging will not allow the dry product to lose its aroma and absorb moisture from the air..