True story.  I have reached into my vegetable bin more times than I care to be truly honest about and discovered a plastic bag full of semi-slimy herbs.  I always have the best intentions at the grocery store, my head full of herbal possibilities.  I will make pesto, and homemade salsa, and oh, yes, a caprese salad with all that enticing basil.   Food that I will make happen so none of that beautiful greenery would go to waste.

Fast forward to reality.  Time flies.  And your herbs rot.  You’re busy thinking about a million more important things like remembering to pay the bills and making sure your kid’s soccer uniform is clean, and then one day you open the drawer for something else, discover your decomposing herbs, and mourn the loss.

Stop punishing your herbs by relegating them to the dark recesses of your crisper bin.  We all know too well that in the refrigerator world, anything that is out of sight is out of mind.  It’s time to stop feeling remorseful.  Having fresh herbs on hand is a really nice way to add “a little something” to everything you eat.  The fresh greenery is so bright and inviting, it’s like a little flower bouquet for your fridge.




Ready for some fast, fun, flavor?  Start by picking up some parsley and cilantro. These two herbs will give you a lot of bang for your buck.  Find a glass or a jar you like looking at, because it’s going to be there for a while.  (I like this part, because I have a thing about washing and saving glass jars.)  Fill it half way full with clean water and stand your herbs up inside.  That’s it!

It is important to change the water in the jars, and an easy way to keep on top of this is by doing it every time you use your herbs (daily, or very other day).  Also, make sure you rinse those herbs well before you use them.  Snip off what you are planning to use and give them a good rinse in a colander.  They were getting regular sprinkles with that (eeew!) water sprayer at the grocery store, remember?  Also, they may have some residual dirt and grit.

What will you do with your now steady supply of fresh herbs?  You will add them to your salads, your smoothies, your salad dressings, your salsa, your cocktails, your marinades, your lemonade…  You’ll get fancy and garnish a plate with them.  But what you won’t do is throw them away.  You will use every last bit of them because they will be clean, and green, and just waiting there for you to take them out and do something fun with them.




Try guessing how old these herbs are.  Go ahead.  I’ll wait…  Okay, I am testing my memory here because I took this photo a few months ago, but as I recall they were about 2 1/2 weeks old.  Never mind that.  I have some in my fridge right now that I can verify are, in fact, 3 weeks old.  And they still look great.

(p.s.  Don’t forget to use those pretty, purple chive blossoms that you might have growing in your garden.  Throw them in your salads, let them show off on your cheese plate, or just admire them in a glass on your kitchen window sill.)

Donna Ferguson

Donna Ferguson

I love to cook, garden, and write about all the things in Vancouver and the Northwest that make life so great.

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