Chives is the common name of Allium schoenoprasum, an edible species of the Allium genus. Its close relatives include the garlic, shallot, leek, scallion, and Chinese onion. (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chives). Allium vegetables have been cultivated for centuries for their characteristic, pungent flavors and for their medicinal properties. People take chive to expel parasitic worms. In foods, chive is used commonly as a flavoring. Chives are used fresh or dried in cooking and to prepare Chives tea.
Chives have been used for thousands of years in traditional Chinese medicine to promote sweating and male fertility, effects that are attributed to the stimulatory properties of allyl sulfides and alkyl sulfoxides. Chives also contain high levels of iron and calcium and several antioxidant compounds, including beta-carotene, kaempferol and quercetin. The nutrients in chives may offer a number of health benefits, including prevention of cancer and mood enhancement.
You can find chives benefit and side effects on the internet.
This time we will focus on the dry chives, the efficacy and how to cultivate it.
Some of the different cultivars of chives include:
1. Giant Siberian (Allium ledebourianum),
2. Chinese or garlic chives (Allium tuberosum),
3. Siberian garlic types (Allium nutans).
Dried chives nutritions
whether dried herbs still have the same properties?
When it comes to green herbs, some nutrients and some flavor compounds–will inevitably be lost in the drying process, and more will be lost with extended storage. But that doesn’t mean that all dried herbs are nutritionally worthless. For maximum flavor and nutrition, you want to pick your herbs right before you use them. All fresh vegetables–including herbs will lose nutritional value just sitting in your refrigerator, or the grocer’s case. When fresh herbs aren’t an option, dried herbs still are a source of both nutrition and flavor.
Dried herbs perform best in dishes with a long cooking time and a fair amount of liquid where they will simmer and rehydrate for some time. Dishes like stew, soups, braises, chili and long-simmering curries tend to do well with dried herbs. Dried chives tend to do best if they’re added during cooking so their flavor has time to infuse the whole dish. It also helps an enormous amount to work with good-quality dried chives herbs. If you open a jar and can’t smell that herby aroma, it’s time to replace it!
Rather than buy dried chives, you might wish to try drying your own at home. If you have an abundance of chives and want to do drying chives for storage, please follow these instructions.
There are two basic methods drying Your Chives easily, include the traditional method, freezing and oven drying Chives.
Traditional Method of Drying Chives
Be sure to harvest your chives in the morning hours after the sun has dried away the dew of the night. They will be full of flavor and not parched after a day of summer sun.
Leave about and inch of the bundle uncut. It is better for the plant. The plant as a whole, needs to have sunlight to grow and thrive. Pull out any grass or dead and withered chives also chive flowers. The stalk of the Chive flower is too woody, so it would be better if just pull it out.
To dry the chives there are traditionally two methods, first by drying them directly under the hot sun or by being allowed to dry naturally by hanging in a dry place, but this takes a long time.
If you choose to let chives dry naturally, follow these steps:
- Gather the sprigs into loose bundles and secure the stems with rubber bands to assure that the bundles stay together as they dry.
- If using brown paper bags, cover each bundle with the bags that have slits cut into the sides to allow for adequate air flow around the herbs.
- The paper bags keep dust off of the Chives as it dries and the sunlight from bleaching out the color. Care must be taken to make sure that enough air flows through the bag to keep the Chives from molding. Check occasionally to make sure, and, if need be either cut more holes in the bags or remove them. Sometimes the moisture builds up inside the bag, especially if the sun hits it, allowing fungus and mildew to form.
- Hang upside down in a warm and dry place until the leaves are brittle to the touch, approximately 2 weeks.
For a faster technique by drying under direct sunlight follow these steps:
Set it outside in direct sunlight until dry. Every once and a while toss the chives to make sure they are drying evenly. These were dried in the sun for 6 hours when the temperature was 90 degrees. Drying time will depend on the moisture content of your chives, the volume of your chives, the heat and the humidity on the day you are drying them.
Oven Drying Chives
- Wash and gently spin dry the fresh Chive sprigs.
- Pick out the discolored leaves and tough stems.
- Preheat your oven to lowest temperature setting.
- Chop or clip herbs into 1/4″ pieces or so onto parchment lined cookie sheet.
- Place in oven on top rack for 2 to 4 hours or until Chives crumble easily between your fingers. Drying times may vary according climate conditions and relative humidity.
- Gather up the parchment paper into a funnel and place smallest end over the mouth of a clean, completely dry jar or vacuum sealer bag and seal tightly.
Store your dried chives in a cool dry place and they are ready to use. Gather the dried bundles and place on a sheet of wax paper.
Crumble or clip the dried stalks and separate out all of the tough stems onto the wax paper.
Form a funnel with the paper and pour the dried chives into a clean jar or a vacuum sealer pouch and seal tightly.
Place jar or vacuum sealed pouch in a dry, dark place such as your kitchen cabinet, pantry or even your freezer.
Store in an air tight container in the pantry for use in cooking.
Chives freeze dried
How to freeze chives? To freeze dry chives, first, chop them and then place on a cookie sheet; put them uncovered in the freezer. Spread the chives in a single layer on a cookie sheet. Be sure to use with either parchment paper or a silpat sheet.
Pop the sheet in the freezer for at least 30 minutes or until frozen. When the moisture has evaporated and they are dry and brittle, transfer to a glass spice jar and seal tightly.
For the highest nutritional content, start with the freshest chives you can find. Use frozen chives in the same portion as you would fresh chives. Chives easily keep for 4 to 6 months, longer if kept at a constant temperature of 0 degrees Fahrenheit.
How to store dried Chives
Dried Chives lose potency quickly, especially if stored where they are exposed to heat, sunlight, or oxygen. Keep your dried Chives in good shape longer by storing them in an airtight jar inside a cabinet or drawer. On the counter next to your stove might be convenient, but it’s a terrible place to store your dried Chives.
Chives side effects
Chives are likely safe when consumed in amounts normally found in foods. Chives are not normally considered allergenic, but people who need to avoid onions and other foods of the same family may need to be cautious. Too much chive may provide too high a concentration of certain organic compounds, which may lead to abdominal discomfort.
Chives may cause skin irritation, skin lesions, and stomach irritation. Caution is advised in people with bleeding disorders or those taking drugs that may increase the risk of bleeding. Some examples include aspirin, anticoagulants (blood thinners) such as warfarin (Coumadin®) or heparin, antiplatelet drugs such as clopidogrel (Plavix®), and nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs such as ibuprofen (Motrin®, Advil®) or naproxen (Naprosyn®, Aleve®). Also Chives may cause low blood pressure.
of nutrients:Chives (Allium schoenoprasum L.),
Nutrient value per 100 g.(Source: USDA National Nutrient data base)
|Principle||Nutrient Value||Percentage of|
|Total Fat||0.73 g||3%|
|Dietary Fiber||2.5 g||7%|
|Vitamin A||4353 IU||145%|
|Vitamin C||58.1 mg||98%|
|Vitamin E||0.21 mg||1.5%|
|Vitamin K||212.7 µg||177%|