Some herbs are actually better dried than fresh. This gives them a huge advantage over other varieties since you can buy a lot during peak season and still use them for the rest of the year. Thyme is one of the herbs that are much better when dried; not only does its flavor get even more intense, it also takes up less counter space when dried.
Amount of dried thyme used in cooking
Because dried thyme has more flavor than fresh, you will need less of it for cooking. The rule of thumb when substituting dried thyme for fresh is to use only a third of the amount required by the recipe; Reduce the amount a bit more if you will be using ground thyme.
You need to be a bit careful because substituting dried herbs for fresh is quite complicated. Some recipes might specify sprigs which can differ on the yield of leaves. Assuming that you have a 4” sprig (they are usually somewhat longer), estimate that 6 sprigs will produce 1 tablespoon of leaves. The ratio for dried thyme is 1:3, so substitute 1 teaspoon of dried or ¾ teaspoon of ground thyme for 6 fresh small sprigs.
Store dried thyme correctly to preserve its flavor
Dried thyme is available all throughout the year. When you do buy it, store it in an air-tight container, and keep it away from heat, moisture, and light. Use a dark glass container since metal or plastic may affect its taste. If stored properly, dried thyme can preserve its potency and flavor for up to 1 year.
When to add dried thyme in cooking
In most cases, dried thyme is most effective if it is used during the early stages of cooking, just like bay leaves. This gives it time to infuse its flavor to the whole dish. Here are other tips on how to make the most out of the unique flavors of dried thyme:
- For soups like split pea and lentil, add the dried when you are just about to end cooking. It gives the soup a nice aroma. Just simply add the herb and immediately take the soup out of the heat, and keep the soup covered. Once you are ready to serve, take off the cover and prepare yourself to waft in the heavenly smell of the soup.
- Poultry dishes usually have a mild taste. This can be improved by adding thyme. Add dried thyme when you are roasting or baking chicken. It will add a lot of flavor and aroma that everyone will definitely love. Add a bit of lemon juice to the dried thyme and baste the chicken with the mixture to get the best results.
- Add a couple of pinches of dried thyme to the flour when you are baking bread. This will produce an herbed bread that goes great with butter.
- Dried thyme also works well with pasta. Once you have already prepared the sauce, add a pinch of the dried leaves to enhance its flavor.
- You can also create a bouquet garni with dried thyme. Mix 1 piece of bay leaf and 2.5 g each of marjoram, sage, rosemary, and dried thyme in a small piece of cheesecloth. Tie the corners of the cheesecloth together with string to create an herb packet. Float this packet in pork roast, beef stew or homemade chicken soup to infuse the flavors onto the dish.
- Add a twist to cream cheese using dried thyme. Mix 1/3 teaspoon of dried thyme, 1 teaspoon of finely minced chives, 1/8 teaspoon of salt and 1/8 teaspoon of white pepper to 3 ounces of softened cream cheese. This is best served with crackers or toast triangles.
- Make your turkey for Thanksgiving more interesting by adding dried thyme to the stuffing. Mix ½ teaspoon of dried thyme with marjoram, sage, rosemary, salt and black pepper to enhance the flavor of the turkey.
Bonus tip: Rub the dried thyme between your fingers before adding it to the dish. This releases the oils in the leaves thereby adding extra flavor.
You can also check our Best Guacamole Recipe here: https://www.gotoilsupplies.com/blog/best-guacamole-recipe