tip: how to store cilantro/coriander leaves

Every time I buy a bunch of fresh cilantro, I feel nostalgic about the vegetable vendors in India tucking in a few green chillies and a little dhania for free in your veggie basket! I remember reading in some food memoir about French vendors giving out free bouquet garni to their buyers in farmers’ markets. Wonder if they still do it there. It’s not only nice (who doesn’t like getting free things?), but also efficient, given that herbs don’t last very long in a refrigerator.

There are apparently people out there who hate cilantro and find its taste, of all things, soapy! Read this. I am not one of them. I can never have too much of it. But even for me, it’s difficult to use up an entire bunch within a day or two. What you see in the picture above is just half of the bunch I bought today! Ideally, I would have a huge kitchen garden, grow my own herbs and pluck fresh leaves as and when I need them. But that’s not happening any time soon. This is what I do meanwhile and it works!

  1. Remove the rubber band or the string that ties the bunch together.
  2. Get rid of any leaves or stems that look yellow or rotten.
  3. Fill a glass or pitcher or a bottle with water and put the coriander in it, like you’d put flowers in a vase.
  4. Take a plastic bag and put it over the leaves like a cap. This is to protect them from excessive cold in the fridge.
  5. You can keep it like this in the refrigerator for almost 2 weeks or even more! Washing the leaves before storing them will reduce the shelf life. So, avoid it if you can.
How do you store cilantro?
Tip courtsey: Show Me The Curry


6 thoughts on “tip: how to store cilantro/coriander leaves

  1. I had given up buying cilantro because it would go bad really soon. But not anymore! This method works! Thanks for the tip.

  2. you know madhur jaffrey suggested the same strategy with coriander in one of her classic cook books and I’ve always wanted to try it. you make it look possible! I usually store my coriander leaves (with no roots) in one of those steel boxes that have holes punched all over them. lasts about 5-6 days.

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