January 9, 2013

Freezing Fresh Herbs in Ice Cube Trays with Butter or Olive Oil

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My mother was great at using every last bit of the food she bought. She would use leftover veggies to make stock and the herbs from her garden were used fresh, frozen and dried. I was always amazed at how many thing she could get out of one store bought vegetable or fruit. In the last couple of weeks I have decided to buckle down on our food waste. Now granted I use as many leftovers as possible and am very frugal with making my own stock and cooking from scratch. However, even the best of us can get better and I am making a concerted effort to use every last bit of the food that I buy as much as possible. With that in mind when I had leftover fresh rosemary after making pot roast last night I remembered a great idea that my mother used. Instead of wasting the leftover fresh herbs she would freeze them with butter or olive oil and freeze them in ice cube trays. It was easy and perfect for later meals. So here is my recipe to on how to freeze fresh herbs with butter or olive oil for later use.

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Start with fresh herbs. My favorite herb to use is Rosemary. It holds up very well to being frozen and is perfect with roasted vegetables, potatoes or chicken. I normally chop up my rosemary finely, since that is the texture that I prefer. However, this recipe would also work with torn or snipped fresh rosemary depending on your preference.

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Next place the rosemary in the bottom of a plastic ice cube tray. Add as much rosemary as you wish. The more rosemary the stronger the flavor will be and the less the weaker the flavor. The amount really depends on personal preference. I normally add approximately 1-1 1/2 tsp per ice cube.

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Fill each ice cube with either butter or olive oil. I really like using salted butter. It tastes delicious sliced and placed under the skin of a whole chicken and then roasting. It is also great with mashed potatoes, roasted potatoes or roasted vegetables.

Place the ice cube tray in the freezer until set. Pop out the ice cubes as needed. That's it, easy and a great way to use leftover fresh herbs.

This recipe would also work with other fresh herbs besides rosemary. I have tried it with both oregano and sage and they both work very well.
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