Tuesday, May 10, 2011

No Regrets This Year

In the spring when my chives reach a nice height and before they bloom, I go out and give them a really short haircut.

Besides the rhubarb that is coming along nicely, but no where near cutting stage yet, the chives are the only thing in the garden that is green and growing.

Why do they get hacked down all at once?

Because I process them to put into containers that I freeze for use when the fresh chives have died down in the fall.

You may notice (upon close inspection) that the date on the above containers of chives is a little wonky. That's because being the lazy person I am, I used pictures from two years ago.

But I promise you I went through the exact same chive chopping process today. Now the house and my hands have a definite redolence of chives. Whoo-ee! Papa Pea has been gone all day and when he walked back in a half hour ago, his first words were, "Whoa! You're doing chives!"

Don't ask me why ('cause it beats me), but I failed to put any chives in the freezer last year. Yup, we were chive-less all winter. And, boy howdy, did I ever miss them. I kept thinking about putting some in cream soups, cottage cheese, scrambled eggs, dinner biscuits and rolls, etc. all through the winter months but the cupboard (freezer) was bare (of chives). This year I wanted to make sure I didn't regret failing to put up a big bunch, so that was my project for this afternoon. (I do live such an exciting life, no?)


  1. I think it's pretty exciting! :)

  2. So do you blanch them or just freeze as is. I have never though of freezing fresh. I have only dried them. But this would be a great (and easy) way to enjoy them. Thanks!

  3. I do the same, and freshly frozen chives sure hit the spot all winter long.

  4. Oh thank you Mama Pea. I have chives that are really tall and now I know what to do with them! I'll chop them down and freeze them. It never occurred to me that I could freeze chives. I don't have a dehydrator so can't dry them but freezing would be good.

  5. Greetings from Amish country. Richard from Lebanon countys Amish community.

  6. So when they get that little purple head on them are they no longer any good?

    And do you just chop and freeze?

    And once you cut the chives, do more grow back up?

    I have one chive plant and I keep staring at it, not knowing what to do...

  7. Patty - I think we both live the same kind of "exciting" life! Ain't it grand?

    Jane - No, you don't need to blanch them. Just cut (or chop) up and freeze. They stay nice and green in the freezer. I've dried them, too, but the freezing is SO much easier. When I want to use some, I just take a container out of the freezer and kind of scrape the amount I need out with my finger. Easy-peasy.

    Kelly - Don't they though? Super!

    Sparkless - Do take the time to do this. They add such color and flavor to foods all winter long.

    Richard - Welcome and thanks for commenting! Greetings to you, too.

    JJ - Chives are still perfectly fine to use when they flower (the blossoms are edible, too, and look great in salads or cottage cheese) but I think the flavor is "fresher" at the first of the season so that's when I freeze mine. But I cut and use chives all summer long until the frost kills them. Yes, just chop and freeze. As easy as that. To use everyday in anything that you would use onions in, just take a pair of scissors and cut off as much as you need about an inch from the ground. They grow back astoundingly fast all summer long. I have two plants but one would be adequate. I only cut about half of one plant today for all I froze. Now get out there and start using those beautiful chives. You will love them. I sprinkle them in just about anything to add flavor and color. Think quiche, for instance!

  8. Great idea freezing them. I'm going to add that to the "to-do" list (which is currently a mile long!) I've tried potting up chives for fresh winter use, but lets face it, they just don't do as well in the house in winter in pots. I so love chives!

  9. I'm going out to my chives right now!!!lol
    But they're so beautiful with those flowers on them, and mine have already been blooming down here for alnmost 2 weeks...

    I wonder--can I freeze the flowers too?
    I loves me some chives...

  10. Yup, I love chives too. Thanks for reminding me to get out there and give them a shave.

  11. Congrats on the weather! I heard it was 88 at my mom's yesterday, it was only 69 here LOL!

    Count me in on that exciting life - my idea of a party is right along those lines, too! Give me a glass of wine in my garden on a Friday night and it rivals a college party :)

  12. What a great idea! I will add it to my list for tonight...

  13. Sue - Over the years I've had very little success wintering any herbs over inside the house. Monday I was at a meeting with a gal who brought several gallon baggies full of basil she pruned off of her basil plant that she brought in last fall!

    Akannie - Welcome and thanks for commenting! I've never tried freezing the flowers but why not give it a go? I think I'd put them in a "hard" container rather than a plastic baggie so they didn't get smooshed. Let me know if you try it.

    Lorie - They're so great in that they regrow so quickly, too!

    Erin- You betcha, Babe! What better place than in a beautiful green and growing garden in the evening with a glass of wine in hand! I'll drink to that.

    Susan - They will be a true touch of summer for you all winter long!

  14. Mine are everywhere! I think I best give them a buzz cut too or it will be too late. Never thought of freezing them either. And thanks for the tip about the flowering. Pretty sure mine are in that catergory...oops! :)

  15. APG - With the LONG list you're facing right now, you might have to forego freezing chives this year!!

  16. You know, chives is something I don't grow, but your list of things to add them too makes them sound pretty tempting. Plus I love the idea they can be frozen.