Herbs can be frozen, dried, or salted for use during the fall, winter, and spring. Depending on the method you’ll be using, you can cut whole stalks, remove just the leaves, or pinch off sprigs for your herbs. The dried seeds of some herbs — anise, caraway, coriander, dill, fennel, and sesame — are also used for flavorings, but most herbs are grown for their leaves.
You should harvest herbs to be stored when the flowers of the plant are just beginning to open; this is the moment when flavor is at its peak. Cut the plants on a dry, sunny morning—after the dew has dried, but before the sun gets too hot. The leaves you want are the young, tender, pungent ones growing at the top six inches of the plant. Strip off the tough, lower leaves and remove the flower clusters. Rinse the herbs with cold water to remove dirt and dust, then blot them dry with paper towels.
If you’re growing herbs for their seeds, harvest the seeds as soon as the heads turn brown, but before they ripen completely and begin to fall off. Harvest the seeds on a warm, dry day, and then dry them, as detailed below. Seeds are dried in their pods, husks, or coverings. You remove these coverings by winnowing — rubbing a few seeds at a time between your palms to loosen the pod or husk, which will then fall away. Herb seeds should not be frozen or salted.

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