Kitchen hacks in English – Please scroll down
This is the 2nd part of kitchen hacks in preserving aromatic herbs, particularly scallion, coriander and Chinese pasley.
If you miss the 1st part of kitchen hacks in preserving aromatic herbs, you are welcome to click on the title to read. It is a relatively short article about Preserving Aromatic Herbs, included rosemary, kaffir lime leaves and curry leaves.
I trust the control measures imposed due to covid-19 pandemic have highlight the challenges we face in storing perishables. Some of our favourite aromatic herbs, like scallion, coriander and Chinese pasley do not last long should you throw your purchase into fridge immediately home. Chances are, you retrieve some wilting (or wilted？）herbs that looks mushy due to rottening, majority of the leaves turned yellowish that you would not want to eat it.
Learning how to treat and store these aromatic herbs will reduce unnecessary food waste. In addition, you get to enjoy fresh looking aromatic herbs if you use them as garnishes, or better taste aromatic herbs that enhance the good flavour of your dishes.
4-Steps In Preserving Scallion & Coriander
- Select the freshest produce
- Clean the produce thoroughly
- Dry the produce
- Store the produce
- SELECT THE FRESHEST PRODUCE
One of the most important aspects in preserving any vegetables, is the selection of freshest produce. The same applies to aromatic herbs like scallions, coriander and Chinese pasley.
This is the same concept to skin care. If you start taking care of your skin at the age of 32, your daily care will slow down the aging process from 32 year old. No matter what you apply, there is no way to improve the condition of skin to look like 22 year old.
So you want the aromatic herbs to look fresh, you better spend some efforts to choose the fresh ones to begin with.
2. CLEAN THE PRODUCE THOROUGHLY
Cleaning is very important step in order to prolong the shelf life of aromatic herbs like scallion, coriander and Chinese pasley.
Most of us may have a wrong concept that aromatic herbs are not suitable for washing in advance. This is not true.
When I come home with the scallion, coriander and Chinese pasley, I soak them in water for a good 10-15min. It is fine to do with or without vegetable wash. This process will soften the dirt or other particles that stick onto the aromatic herbs, as well as bacteria that contribute to rottening process.
Once I am done soaking the scallion, coriander and Chinese pasley, I wash them separately to remove residue soil, dirt, alien particles and possibly, bacteria.
3. DRY THE PRODUCE
Now it is time to dry the scallion, coriander and chinese pasley. I usually leave the aromatic herbs in their own bowl to air-dry for 30min, followed by pat-dry with a clean kitchen cloth or paper towel.
If you carry out this step properly, they will sure last longer.
Once the aromatic herbs are dry, I will portion out based on my cooking needs.
First, I trim off the roots of scallion plants (Pic 1), the white part of scallion (lower part) can either be kept in a zip lock bag or a jar of water.
For keeping in zip lock bag – Place a piece of paper towel into the bag, followed by the scallion, squeeze out the air before sealing the bag. The scallion can be kept in fridge for 10-14 days using this way (Pic 2).
For keeping in a jar of water – Fill a clean, oil free jar with half inch of water, place the scallion in, use a zip lock bag upside down to shield the scallion. The scallion can be kept in fridge for 20-30 days using this way (Pic 2).
The green part of scallion, approx. 3-4 inch from tip, I cut into small bit size that is suitable for sprinkle onto soup. These are meant to be dehydrated and kept in glass jar for use in future (as shown in Pic 3 and Pic 4).
Preserving Coriander and Chinese Pasley
Coriander and Chinese pasley belong to the same family, I will collectively call them coriander as they can be preserved in the same way.
First of all, coriander has tender soft leaves that are easy to go rotten. Hence, it is very important to separate the healthy stems and leaves (Pic 5) from the rottening stems and leaves (Pic6). This step lowers the possibility of affecting the healthy steams and leaves.
Coriander roots offer beautiful aroma and I use them for cooking Thai food. Therefore, I cut off 3-4inch from the coriander roots, wrap them with paper towels (Pic 7). Do the same to coriander stems and leaves (Pic 5), wrap them with paper towels too.
For keeping in zip lock bag – Place both packs in a zip lock bag. Squeeze out the air before sealing the bag. The coriander can be kept in fridge for 10-14 days using this way (Pic 8).
Separating the roots from stems and leaves allow me to retrieve the coriander conveniently based on cooking needs. If you do not use the root at all, cut it off, only preserve the stems and leaves.
For keeping in a jar of water – Fill a clean, oil free jar with half inch of water, place the coriander in, use a zip lock bag upside down to shield the coriander bouquet. The coriander can be kept in fridge for 20-30 days using this way (Pic 9).
4. STORE THE PRODUCE
Should you carry out the previous steps correctly, you will conveniently enjoy fresh scallion, coriander and Chinese pasley in great conditions for the coming weeks.
The following photos show scallion, coriander and Chinese pasley that I store for 7 days and still storing. I will take out appropriate amount depends on cooking needs daily.
Coming up are photos that show scallion, coriander and Chinese pasley that I am keeping in jars of water. Photos was taken on the 7th day, they are very healthy and full of life. I usually change the water every 3 days. They will last well up to 20-30 days in fridge.
Hope my sharings will be helpful to you, a little care goes a long way.
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