Maybe this is a widely-known trick, but I was delighted to run across it online this summer. I had heard about freezing basil in ice-cube trays, or freezing pesto, but this to me seems like a lot less trouble.
All you do is toss clean and dry basil leaves with olive oil, like you were making a salad. OK, maybe using a little more oil than you would on a salad – enough to ensure you’ve coated all the leaf surfaces.
Then all you do is freeze the leaves. I did mine in a relatively flat layer, and I vacuum sealed the bag. So far it looks great – they’ve been frozen about 6 weeks and are still a beautiful green. I’m still using fresh basil right now, but I think the frozen stuff is going to work this winter!
My husband just won an upright freezer at work this morning in a draw. I am SO excited! I had long since filled the chest freezer! I freezed a ton of basil in water in ice cube trays and a few “log rolls” this past weekend – pesto was going to be next weekend. I will try your way. It sounds pretty easy!
Thanks for the idea!
I wish I was the guy that invented the vacuum sealer. It certainly changed the world, especially for the big-box warehouse stores like Sam’s Club. I can’t imagine not not having one, and you can never have too many freezers.
What a great tip, I will try it soon. Would you say roughly two Tablespoon of olive for a cup of basil. Would you do more or less.
Sorry, I am such a scientist when it comes to recipes… Too much Alton Brown.
Sorry, I didn’t see your last posting until now. I probably used a little more than that, but I don’t know that I needed to. I think the important thing is that all leaf surfaces get coated. Too much won’t hurt anything.
Maybe that will be useful to someone with the 2013 harvest :)
By the way, what I have left in the freezer still looks good.