Learn how to dry tarragon at home!
When you want your fresh tarragon to last so that you can use it throughout the year, you might look for ideas on drying tarragon. You can harvest your tarragon and then dry it so that you can use it when you are baking and preparing food.
You have several different options for drying your tarragon and there are advantages and disadvantages to each one. Take a look at the following ways that you can dry your tarragon at home.
Easy Methods for Drying Tarragon
The air-dry method has been used since ancient times. People used it to dry herbs for food and for their medicines. This method is time consuming, but it works great. Follow these steps:
- Choose a well-ventilated, warm, dry room
- Tie the stalks together in a bundle
- Use a herb-drying rack or hang them to dry
- Cover them with a paper bag and poke holes in it for air
- Leave them hanging for one to two weeks until they are dry
Do not dry them in direct sunlight because this will take the flavor away. They need to be in a warm, dry place out of direct sunlight. The advantage to this method is that it is easy and costs you nothing. The disadvantage is that it takes a longer time than other methods. It is also difficult if you live in a humid climate.
Drying tarragon in the oven
This method is popular because it is inexpensive and it is much faster than air drying. All you need is parchment paper and a baking sheet. You will dry the tarragon in the oven. It is important to remember that you are trying to dry the tarragon and you do not want to bake it. You should put your oven on the lowest possible setting. Follow these steps:
- Preheat your oven to the lowest temperature possible
- Place parchment paper on a baking sheet
- Lay the tarragon out on the parchment paper
- Place the baking sheet in the oven for an hour
- Let it cool completely
The advantage to using this method is that you already have an oven and it won’t take very long. You only need parchment paper and a baking sheet.
The disadvantage is that you have to be careful. If you have the oven set on too hot a temperature, the tarragon can bake and lose its flavor. You will want to watch the tarragon to make sure that you take it out as soon as it wrinkles and turns brown.
Drying tarragon with the dehydrator
Drying tarragon with a dehydrator is the best option, but you will need a dehydrator to do it. It works well if you have a lot of tarragon to dry. The dehydrator is made so that you can set your tarragon and forget about it until it is finished. Follow these steps:
- Lay your tarragon on the dehydrator rack that comes with your dehydrator
- Turn on the dehydrator and set it to medium
- Leave your tarragon to dry
You can leave your tarragon in the dehydrator overnight and it will retain all of its flavor. It works well because the machine is designed for this task. The advantages are that it is easy to use, it requires no effort, and it works in one to four hours.
The main disadvantage is the cost. You will have to buy a dehydrator and find a place to store it.
How to Store Dried Tarragon
Once your tarragon is dry, you need to store it so that you can use it when you are preparing meals. The first thing to do is to remove the leaves from the stems. You can chop the dried leaves into little pieces so that you can use them in a blend with other herbs or on their own. They should be easy to chop because the leaves are dry and brittle.
Next, you want to place the tarragon into an airtight container. You can use different kinds of containers as long as they are airtight. Then, place it in a cool, dry, and dark place for storage. You might want to keep it on a shelf in your pantry, away from any windows or natural light. If you made a large batch, you can place some in vacuum-sealed bags to use once your current supply runs out.
Final words …
Tarragon is a green leafy herb that has a subtle licorice flavor. It works well in a number of recipes for everything from salads to chicken and fish. You can preserve it by drying it and you can use any of the three methods above to do so. Once you dry it, place it in airtight containers and store it in a cool, dark, and dry place until you use it. It is delicious and will add flavor to your meals.