How to store leafy herbs


There are many different tips on the best way to store leafy herbs like basil, parsley, and cilantro. Julia Bainbridge of Yahoo! Food claims to have tried them all and found that the "bouquet" method is the best around. Using this method, you trim off the ends of the stems as you would fresh-cut flowers, put the herbs in a vase large enough not to crowd them, and loosely cover the herbs with a plastic bag. Most herbs should then be tucked into the fridge, except for basil, which Bainbridge recommends storing at room temperature.

This tip is great if you have room in your refrigerator to accommodate a large vase, aren't worried about said vase tipping over and making a mess, and if you remember to change the water every couple of days. The accompanying video demonstrates the entire process, but I found the most useful part of the video to be the section that shows how to prepare the herbs just before use. About 30 seconds in, you'll see a demonstration of how to use a knife to quickly shave the leaves from the stems. This sure looks faster and easier than hand picking, which can be tedious.

The article says that using this storage method will keep herbs fresh for up to five days. My experience is that most herbs will last that long if I just throw the bag straight into the vegetable crisper without doing anything. What do you think is the best way to store leafy herbs?

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