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Make Your Cilantro And Parsley Last A Long Time

eggy By eggy on
Badge: Advisor | Level: 17 | Food & Drink Expertise:
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Parsley, cilantro, garlic, onions, ginger, and spring onions are crucial to my cooking and I always need to have some on hand. Fortunately, most of these are easy to store and have a long shelf life. However, if you don't handle your cilantro correctly it can turn into a slimy mess.

There are a variety of opinions about the best way to store cilantro. Some people recommend washing it and then wrapping it in a paper towel and placing it either a paper or plastic bag. Others recommend placing it in a glass of water in the refrigerator.

After experimenting with all of the approaches, my failsafe method is:

1. Select cilantro at the market which is nice and green and not very wet.

2. At home, remove any bad or damaged leaves.

3. Align the bottom of the stems, wrap them with a twisty tie or rubber band.

4. Cut a small amount off the bottom of the stems.

5. Place the unwashed cilantro in a glass of cold tap water (being careful that the leaves don't touch the water).

6. Place the cilantro and glass into a plastic produce bag and tie or band it closed.

7. Change the water each time when you use a bit of cilantro, or at least once a week.

Typically, you will just use a small portion of the cilantro at a time. Of course you will want to wash it before use. Also, any time that you have the cilantro open, discard any unattractive stems and leaves.

Debbie Meyer Green Bags work even better than plain plastic bags. The cilantro pictured was bought more than two weeks before I went on a 14 day cruise (so it went 15 days without changing the water and was still fresh enough to use).

This approach also will extend the life of parsley; I have had parsley remain usable for more than 8 weeks. This method would probably also work well with other herbs and spices (such as oregano, basil, mint, thyme, dill, etc.).

Note: Cilantro, Chinese Parsley, and Coriander Leaves are just different names for the same thing.

I hope that you find this useful.

Update On Mar 11, 2010: Chelation therapy is a treatment to remove heavy metals (such as lead) from the human system. Some people claim that Cilantro is a very good chelation agent.

Update On Mar 11, 2010: Chelation therapy is a treatment to remove heavy metals (such as lead) from the human system. Some people claim that Cilantro is a very good chelation agent.