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Wednesday, 1 August 2012

OREGANO

Good Morning to you,

At the moment, I have an enormous amount of oregano growing in my herb garden.  I really didn't expect such a bumper crop, as the sun has been practically none existent this year, but grow it has!

So, now is the time to think ahead and dry  some of the oregano, ready to use in heartwarming meals when the days are shorter and colder.

I cut the stems of half the bush to dry, then I continue using the fresh oregano during the rest of the summer months. 

It is such an easy process and the smell, well, the only word I  can use is divine!




What can you see peeking through the oregano bush?



It's our lovely stone statue!  The urn is filled with water each day and the birds sit on the rim and enjoy a drink, whilst we enjoy the spectacle from the kitchen window.



Now to business.  Cut 6 stems of oregano, or more if you have a large plant growing. I graduate the cutting, as I don't have space to hang lots of oregano, so once this oregano is dry, I will cut some more and so on and so on until I have the dried amount I want.




Tie  a couple of stems together with garden twine. Continue until all three sets of stems are tied together, then hang them to dry in a warm place.





Then after 10 - 14 days your stems of oregano will look like this. Not very pretty I know, but you've heard the saying "looks can be deceiving" and my, is this picture deceiving, as the aroma of the dried oregano is delicious.

Just a word of warning, make sure your leaves are dried and crispy looking, as if there is a hint of moisture left in the leaves, when you place them into jars, the oregano will become mouldy. 

You have a choice,



you can strip the leaves from the stems and they will look like this!





Then you can store them in small jars ready to use whenever you need oregano.


OR



you can place the stems into a large kiln jar  and keep the jar in a cool, dark, place until you are ready to strip the leaves and use.  They can be stored for at least 6 months.

Which ever you decide you will have an abundance of oregano to last you through the winter months.

Enjoy yourself doing this, to my mind there is nothing more gratifying than gathering produce from your garden. The produce is practically free, apart from giving time and effort, whether it is just a little oregano or a bumper crop of tomatoes, but the feeling of achievement is tremendous. So go ahead, buy some seeds, plant them and reap the benefits!

Take care, enjoy the rest of your week and I will see you on Sunday.


Best Wishes


Daphne xxx
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