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Dill is an aromatic herb commonly used in cooking. In warm weather, each housewife adds it to dishes to add flavor. In the summer, it is very easy to buy or grow fresh herbs in the garden.
Fresh dill, unlike what is sold in stores in winter, is rich in vitamins and nutrients.
What if in winter you want a pleasant smell of fresh herbs in a finished dish, is it possible to freeze greens in the freezer and store and how to do it correctly? We will talk about this in our article.
Are the beneficial properties lost when freezing at home?
Under the influence of heat and sunlight, dill begins to quickly lose vitamin C, and a few hours are enough for this. Therefore, it should be kept cold. When frozen, fresh dill will not lose its beneficial properties, unlike dried herbs.
Freezing must be carried out in stages and in no case should at least one of the points be skipped. Otherwise improperly frozen dill go bad and it cannot be eaten.
Only fresh greens, which have not yet had peduncles, are suitable for freezing. This grows in gardens in early summer (June, July).
What needs to be done so that dill does not deteriorate when frozen, does it need to be washed? There are several preparation points to complete.
- Examining the dill for the presence of yellowness, wilted stems, signs of mechanical damage and the effects of insects. If there are any, we cut off all the damaged areas. It should be juicy and fresh. The most suitable for freezing is dill, which has not yet had umbrellas.
- We rinse thoroughly under running water, greenery, especially the stems. This will prevent dirt from getting into the dish.
- Dry the greens very carefully, can be hung over the sink, then blot with a dry cloth to remove any remaining moisture. You can put the dill in a jar and leave it on for a while. In this case, all the moisture will roll down to the bottom of the container.
How much is stored?
If all the conditions for preparing for freezing dill are met, greens can be stored in the freezer for 1-2 years. In no case should you allow re-freezing, this will negatively affect the taste characteristics of the dill and its appearance.
It is better to freeze the product in portions at a time. If, nevertheless, there is a need to defrost, put the containers with frozen dill in a cool place and wrap with a towel. Avoid getting air into containers with herbs (bags, containers), otherwise the process of decomposition of the ingredients may begin.
There are many different ways to freeze dill.... Each hostess likes this or that option. Let's take a look at some of the most popular examples below.
In bag or containers
This option for storing dill is used by many housewives. It does not give a lot of worries and allows you to quickly freeze large amounts of dill. To do this, you just need to purchase containers or bags for freezing and remove the greens in them.
However, the container with dill takes up a lot of space in the freezer, unlike bags. You will often have to take out the container to take a pinch of dill, and put the rest back into the freezer. Because of this, the product can deteriorate faster and lose its beneficial properties.
- In packages it is more convenient to freeze, since you can use the whole bag at once and not subject the product to secondary freezing. We put the prepared greens in special bags for freezing. If there are no such bags, you can use ordinary plastic bags with a dense structure.
You can put both chopped dill and whole branches in the bag, cutting off a thick stem. Remove excess air from the bag by running a rolling pin over it several times, seal the bag and put it in the freezer.
- For freezing in containers, put the prepared herbs in a carefully washed container. We do not tamp, we try to maintain a loose structure. We close the container tightly and immediately send it to the freezer.
With such a freeze, dill will be stored for quite a long time, it can be added to all dishes at the end of cooking: soups, salads, hot dishes, etc.
This storage method is one of the varieties of the previous one (read about the methods of harvesting dill for the winter here). It is the most convenient, since dill is not placed in large containers or bags, but in special forms and bags for one-time freezing. They will not take up a lot of space in the refrigerator and it will be more convenient to use all the contents at once.
One of the disadvantages is that when cutting, the briquette crumbles strongly, which can cause some inconvenience in the kitchen.
The chopped dill is placed in a zippered bag and put into the freezer for preliminary freezing. After a while, they take it out, release all the air, pressing the bag with your hand, close the "zipper" and send it back to the freezer for long-term storage.
With this method, greens before being sent for freezing are poured with boiling water - blanched... In this case, there is no doubt that any pollution has remained in the greenery. But it is worth noting that with this method there are less vitamins than when freezing fresh greens (is it possible to keep the dill fresh in the refrigerator and how to prepare it in other ways, read here).
The prepared herb is blanched, cut and sent to cling film. A kind of "sausage" is wrapped about 10-12 cm long. Use to add to dishes by cutting off a small piece of sausage. It is worth noting that such dill is not suitable for adding, since it contains a lot of unnecessary liquid.
In ice cubes
In this method of freezing it is not necessary to thoroughly dry the herbs... It is enough just to remove faded parts and mechanical damage. This method will preserve the aroma of dill well, but you can only add dill frozen in an ice cube to soups and liquid dishes.
- For freezing, finely chop the peeled fresh bunches, place them in a freezer mold.
- Fill with cooled boiled water, mix, carefully distributing it over the container.
- We send the resulting mass to the freezer.
- When the cubes have hardened, you can put them in a bag and tie them tightly.
You can use the cubes at the end of cooking, adding to the dish to add a fresh herb flavor.
In oil or broth
This method is similar to the previous one, only dill, placed in molds, is poured not with water, but with various oils or broth... A significant disadvantage is that such cubes with dill should be used first of all, since the shelf life is very short.
Prepared washed greens are crushed, distributed in ice molds or in any other small containers, for example, yogurt cups. Then it is mixed with melted butter or chilled broth and sent to the freezer.
By the way, you can use any oil (olive, sunflower, sesame, etc.). The resulting cubes are most often used to make various sauces and dressings.
Prepared dill can be frozen by wrapping it in ordinary foil with sausage. Often times, foil is much more comfortable than plastic bags and certainly much stronger. However, if you prepare a lot of different greens, you can get confused among the variety of rolled "sausages" made of foil in the freezer. Experienced housewives in such cases of frost sign each workpiece.
To freeze the dill, grind the thoroughly washed and dried greens, put the product on a piece of foil, roll it up with a "sausage", removing excess air. The dimensions of the package are independently adjustable, depending on the free space in the refrigerator.
We place the resulting bag in the freezer. If the "sausage" has been rolled up tightly, the dill will not become watery and can be added to all ready meals.
Dill, according to many, is one of the most useful and aromatic herbs. It is often added to various salads, soups and main courses. Every housewife wants their treats to be fragrant. All the freezing methods listed in this article will help with this, even in winter, when fresh herbs on the shelves in the store are in short supply.