How to prepare mint powder / dried mint
1. Start with a big bunch of fresh mint leaves.
2. Wash thoroughly 3-4 times in a large tub of water till all the sand is washed off.
3. Shake off excess water. Spread on newspaper or any absorbent cloth in a single layer till dry.
4. Remove on a sheet pan or several trays as per quantity of mint stalks and keep under sun for 2 days, taking it indoors when sun is down.
5. In absence of sunlight or drying facility, spread it in microwave and on High power, zap for 2-3 minutes, turning them around a couple of times in between.
6. After two days of sun drying or microwave drying, the leaves will become crispy, and you can easily slide them off the stalks. With finger tips, crush this to a fine powder and store in airtight jar. One bunch of leaves yielded roughly 2 tbsp of mint powder.
5 uses with mint powder / dried mint
Sprinkle on parathas to make pudina paratha
Sprinkle of raitas instead of fresh coriander leaves
Add to salad dressings for a fresh taste
Add to Indian vegetable and dal preparations for adding a new taste dimension
Add to lemonades, mojitos and spicy buttermilk (chaas)
The same process can be used to prepare dried basil, dried oregano, dried coriander, dried thyme or any such dried herbs. It is a good way to preserve large packets of fresh herbs when in season or if the supermarket doesn't sell small bunches of the fresh herb.