Friday, July 17, 2015

Harvesting and Drying Coriander: Farmgirl Friday Post 8

Harvesting and Drying Coriander

Farmgirl Friday Sisterhood Post 8



Growing herbs and preserving seeds from my garden brings me full circle with nature. Cilantro is an herb that we use often and I have always been in awe as to the process of cilantro transforming into coriander. It was equally exciting for me this week to harvest our first batch of the year. Shaking the small brown seed pods from the stalks was a bit of a mindful experience.

 I also had the help of our two cats, Oreo and Gelato. Who knew cats enjoyed the smells too!

Always do your best. What you plant now, you will harvest later. 
Og Mandino

Here's how to harvest and dry coriander:

1. Wait until the cilantro plant has bolted and then started to dry and turn brown. The fruits should come away from the plant easily.

2. Cut the plant at its base, taking care that the fruit doesn't scatter. If the fruit does scatter, your cilantro plant will probably reseed. This is not a terrible thing since it produces more cilantro plants next year.

3. Place the plant in a paper bag and shake the bag so the seeds fall off the plant. If the seeds don't fall off easily, place the bag in a warm, dry area for a few days, then try again.

4. Pick over your coriander to be sure all the stems are removed.

5. Coriander that isn’t fully dried tastes bitter. If your coriander needs further drying, spread the seeds on a baking sheet. Preheat your oven to its lowest temperature, then turn your oven off. Place the baking sheet in the oven for five minutes. This should remove any excess moisture.

6. Store your coriander in an air-tight container in a cool, dry place. I keep mine in a mason jar.

The process of harvesting the herbs you've cultivated is one of the most satisfying aspects of growing them. The fragrance of cut herbs fills the air around you, permeates the skin of your hands, and makes you feel blessed.



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