Have you ever had dill in your fridge going to waste? There are a few great methods to preserve dill to use in various recipes later in the year!
In spring, when we plan how much and what to sow in our raised beds, we always take into account the fact that we will want to enjoy some of the harvests later in the year when the weather is too cold for much to survive outside. We are talking about preserving in various different ways.
Preserving a variety of herbs for the winter means that we don’t ever have to buy herbs in the shops. We open our spice cupboard for some dried herbs and simply go to our freezer for some frozen herbs.
Today I am sharing two methods of how we preserve dill to use in recipes all year long: freezing and drying dill. So let’s go straight to it!
How to Freeze Dill?
Freezing dill is a breeze and only takes a few minutes. You may choose to freeze dill in sprigs, or chopped up ready to add to sauces and dressings (the method we prefer). Whichever way you decide to use, you can follow the steps below:
- Harvest dill early in the moring for the best result. Simply cut sprigs of dill and bunch them together.
- Wash the dill in cold water and shake. Then pat dry to make sure to get rid of as much water as possible, but be gentle not to mush the dill too much.
- If you want to freeze whole sprigs, bunch the sprigs together and place into a freezer-friendly resealable bag. Squeezing as much of the air out as possible, seal the bag and place in the freezer for up to 6 months.
- If you want to freeze chopped up dill ready to be used immediately, simply remove the fronds from the stems. Finely chop the dill and place in airtight containers: boxes or bags (we find boxes are better for easy access, if you’re using frozen dill frequently in small amounts). Place the dill in the freezer for up to 6 months.
Frozen dill is amazing to add to sauces, dressings and stews! There is no need to defrost the dill before use, and it adds just as amazing aniseed flavour to the dishes as it would when fresh. Unfortunately, frozen dill is not great to use uncooked, as it loses its texture and aesthetic appeal when thawed.
How to Dry Dill?
Harvest dill in the morning. Wash the dill thoroughly, shake and pat dry. Bundle the dill sprigs in small bunches. Tie the bundles tightly together and hang upside down in a warm, dry spot, making sure your dill doesn’t get too much direct sunlight, or they will lose their green colour and turn yellow.
Leave the dill bundles to dry out completely. Depending on how warm and dry the environment is, it can take 5-14 days.
Once completely dry, cut the dried dill in tiny pieces over a large plate or baking sheet, using kitchen scissors. Leave the dill to dry again for 1-2 days. Finally, transfer it to an airtight container and use it within 4-5 months.
Bonus Idea for Preserving Dill: Dill Butter
Make and freeze dill butter! First bring 250g of butter to room temperature, so that it’s soft and easy to mix. Add 2-3 tbsp of finely chopped fresh dill. If you wish, you can add a pinch of salt too. Mix it so that the dill is well distributed in the butter. Using cling film, roll into a log and freeze. You can then cut rounds of the butter and use to melt over boiled potatoes, to add in sauces for fish, or in Chicken Kievs.
Alternatively, you can freeze the butter in small ramekins. Defrost the butter before serving with some freshly baked bread!
If you’re looking for inspiration on how to use your frozen dill, here are some of our favourite recipes:
- Smoked Salmon Mezzaluna Pasta with Lemon Dill Butter: we use frozen chopped up dill in this recipe, both in the filling an the sauce. You can also use dill butter for the sauce.
- Homemade Fish Burger With Tartar Sauce: we use either frozen or dried dill to make tartar sauce to go with our fish.
- Smoked Salmon & Spinach Pasta: both frozen and dried dill will work great in salmon pasta dishes.