Handling and Storing herbs and spices
Keeping your Herbs and Spices FreshIngredient Shelf Life
Ground spices 2-3 years
Whole spices 3-4 years
Seasoning blends 1-2 years
Herbs 1-3 years
Check the colour of your spices. Make sure they are still vibrant. If the colour has faded, chances are, the flavour has faded as well.
Rub or crush the herb or spice in your hand. If its aroma is weak and is not apparent or it smells musty, it’s time to replace it.
StorageStore spices in a sealed plastic bag with all the air squeezed out and for extra protection you can put this plastic bag inside a tightly capped glass or plastic jar. Keep them away from heat, light and direct sunlight. Squeeze out air and replace the lids right after use. Avoid storing herbs and spices over the stove, near a dish washer or sink, or near a window. We have had excellent results from storing ground and/or green blends in the refrigerator or freezer. The refrigerator or freezer is dry and dark - just what the herb doctor ordered!
HandlingMeasure spices into a cup, measuring spoon or bowl, and then add them to your recipe. Adding spices directly from the bottle, or packet, into a steaming pot will hasten loss and could result in ‘caking’.
Use a dry spoon, or cup, when measuring herbs and spices and replace the lid or reseal right after their use.