Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Cook With Style Tuesdays - Fresh Herbs vs. Dried

Q. What’s More Stylish, Cooking with Dried or Fresh Herbs

A. Here we have one of the elemental struggles for the soul of cooking style. If you watch enough food shows or read enough online cooking forums or blogs you’ll notice a reoccurring piece of advice; fresh herbs should be used instead of the dried variety in your cooking.

If you stress about following that advice, all the time, then your cooking style can evaporate quicker than the careers of Milli Vanilli. A much saner approach is to face the truth that you may not have access to fresh herbs throughout the entire year. Much like you don’t always have access to Jay-Z concert tickets (then again maybe you do). For the rest of us, when you do get the opportunity to use fresh herbs or go to the concert take advantage of the situation and don’t look back! However when the band is not in town or the fresh herbs are not in season, then suck it up, turn on the tunes and dig out the dried herbs. Despite what you may read or hear it can still make for a very worthwhile cooking experience!

Use 3 times as many fresh herbs as dried (Example: 3 tsp (1 tbsp) fresh basil = 1 tsp dried). It’s sort of like concert tickets; they generally cost 3 times more than the cd.

Looking for tips on how to add freshness to you cooking style? Email brent@cookapalooza.com

* * * *
Brent Garell
The Kitchen Roadie


  1. I also think it depends on what flavours you are going for and what herbs you need. Dried and fresh dill are entirely different in flavour.

    I personally don't like dried basil unless you dry it yourself but I really like dried oregano and sage for some uses.

  2. You make a good point Katerina. There are instances where I will only use dried herbs instead of fresh. Especially for many of the marinades I make.