Thursday, May 23, 2019

30 Day Preserving Challenge: Day 5, Lemon Balm

I'm preserving so many things right now that it's hard to decide which to write about first!  Today, we're going to take a walk out to the area where I'm growing herbs and harvest lemon balm.  Lemon balm smells so good and it has several uses from teas to herbal remedies.

The best time of the year to harvest lemon balm is in the spring as the leaves get smaller as the year progresses.  This was a good harvest of nice looking leaves.

I brought it in the house, washed it up,  run it through a salad spinner to get as much of the water off as I could, separated the leaves and laid then them out on the dehydrator shelves.

I dehydrated them for approximately 3 - 4 hours at 100 degrees.  Here the leaves are fresh out of the dehydrator ready for the next step.

I crumbled the leaves up with my hands and then used this big spoon strainer to sift out the stems.

Into a jar it went and is ready for use!  I put a label on the jar and a screw on lid.  Once I have the jar filled, I'll vacuum seal it and start another jar.

Lemon balm is calming so it's good in teas, to flavor water and in making salves to name a few ways to use it.  To flavor water you would use the leaves fresh after washing them.  Just drop them in your water, let it sit for awhile and you're ready to go.

Lemon balms smells divine, I love to run my hands over the plant when I walk by it.  As you might guess I enjoyed working with it for this project, it was a delight to my senses!

A Working Pantry

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  1. Thank you, I made a mistake last autunm when I dehydrated herbs - I dried them with stems and then just crushed everything and now I have those sticks in my herbs... I'll use my strainer spoon, why didn't I think it before!

    1. Ulvmor, the strainer spoon is just the right size to sift directly into a jar. A metal colander would do the same thing if you set it over or in a bowl.

  2. Lemon balm is a weed at our house. I love it but it has spread all over the used from a single plant! I had never thought if sifting stems with a stopping. Great tip!

    1. Lana, that's why I grow lemon balm in a pot, got to keep it contained!!!


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