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Baker's dilemma: Freezing herbed sugars?


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Home Cooking

Baker's dilemma: Freezing herbed sugars?

team_cake | | Jul 26, 2012 11:12 AM

I'm a a fairly experienced home baker/cook, but I'm coming in late with my love of what I call "herbed sugars," or blending fresh herbs into sugar to incorporate into baked goods. For example, mint-sugar -- about 3/4 cup fresh mint leaves/stems whirred into 1 cup of sugar -- adds a wonderful taste to cookies. Our garden is overflowing with mint right now, and I'd really like to make some of this fresh mint sugar combo to set aside to use later in the year. However, grinding or blending the fresh mint into the sugar for incorporation naturally makes a very damp product, and I'm afraid that if I pre-make some of this to set aside months from now, I'll come back to a hardened block of sugar -- or even moldy sugar -- even if it's stored airtight.

I've made vanilla sugar many times in the past, and even when it's slightly damp from fresh vanilla beans it only sort-of gets clumpy later. I think the mint (and other fresh herbs) is definitely too much moisture for long-term storage. But then...brown sugar can be kept well for ages if stored correctly.

Does anyone have experience storing something like this? Suggestions? Freezer?

Related note: I'd try to preserve some of the fresh mint separately, but I don't think dried mint would impart the same notes of "Aaaaa! Garden fresh!" you get from it right now. I'm just trying to think of a clever way to use the mint we have in abundance and also work ahead a bit by maybe processing some mint-sugar now for later use.

Thanks, 'Hounds!

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