Can anyone tell me how to keep fresh cilantro? When I buy it, there is so much in a bundle that I have trouble using it all before it starts to go bad. I usually just keep it in the bag, it comes with a paper towel in it to absorb moisture and I leave the bag partially open to breathe. I'm sure there is a way that would keep it fresh longer.
Thanks for any tips.
Shirley from IA
The best trick I have found is to simply wrap in a papertowel. It will keep it fresher longer. (02/27/2005)
I placed the unwashed cilantro in a glass of water, covered with a plastic bag and keep refrigerated. The water is changed daily. (02/27/2005)
I cheat. I buy a freezable tube of cilantro paste by Gourmet Garden. It should be available in the produce section of your local market. It lasts 3 months in freezer and tastes great in salsas and other dishes. It's more expensive than a bunch of fresh cilantro, but because I use it all up (and waste 3/4 of the fresh stuff), I feel like I'm saving $ by using it. (09/23/2005)
If you have a Tupperware Fridgesmart container it will keep it fresh for about 10-12 days. It really works. (09/24/2005)
Overall, the key for produce of any type to keep well is to treat it gently, no bruising. Yes, the papertowel wrapped around the cilantro or other green produce works well. Greens that are washed and then either gently patted with a clean towel or in a salad spinner, or whatever, to remove excess moisture then wrap in a paper towel then placed in a regular plastic grocery bag keep well.
Another option is to take fresh cilantro (or parsley) and trim the bottom a quarter inch or so to expose fresh stem bottoms, then to put this in a glass of water, but do not allow leaves to dip into water, just stems. When I harvest it I cut it close to the ground to have the longest stems to put in the glass and trim a bit as stated. Cool fresh water. Clean glass.
I just set this on the kitchen counter to use as needed. I do check it daily for any wilting and to trim the stems again every day or every other day, and change the water. This helps the cilantro to continue to "drink". It keeps pretty well, and is readily available. Either option works well, it does keep better in the refrigerator, but it fares quite well kept in a glass as described. (12/06/2005)
If only using for cooking or salsa, I freeze individual portions wrapped in papertowel and plastic wrap. It goes dark green, but tastes the same and is easy to cut up or blend while partially frozen. (02/27/2006)
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