Thursday, January 22, 2009

Herbs & Spices for every servings

Get acquainted with herbs and spices. Add in small amounts, 1/4 tsp. for every servings. Crush dried herbs or snip fresh ones before using. Use 3 times more fresh herbs if substituting fresh for dried.

Basil

This herb has a sweet, warm flavor with an aromatic odor. It can be used whole or ground and is
good with lamb, fish, roast, stews, ground beef, vegetables, dressings and omelets. (I grow my
own in a small pot in my kitchen window. It seems the more leaves I pick off the more the plant
produces.)

Bay Leaves

It has a pungent flavor. Use whole leaves but remember to remove the leaf before serving. It's
good in vegetable dishes, seafood and stews.

Caraway

Spicy in taste with an aromatic smell. Good used in cakes, breads, soups, cheese and
sauerkraut.

Chives

Sweet, mild flavor of an onion. Great in salads, fish, soups and potatoes. (This is another one
that I grow in my kitchen. I cut it just above the dirt and like grass, it grows right back.)

Cilantro

Use fresh. Excellent in salads, fish, chicken, rice, beans and Mexican dishes.

Curry Powder

This is a blend of spices that gives a distinct flavor to meat, poultry, fish and vegetables.

Dill

Both seeds and leaves are flavorful. Leaves can be used to garnish, cook with fish, soup,
dressings, potatoes and beans. (I like fresh dill but the plant gets a little large for my kitchen
window so I keep a pot growing on my porch. The only problem I find is the squirrels seem to
like it too. So I put small rocks on top so they can't dig up the plant.)

Fennel

Sweet, hot flavor. Both seeds and leaves are used but use in small quantities in pies and baked
goods.

Ginger

This is a pungent root sold fresh, dried or ground. It's common in cakes, cookies, soups and
meat dishes. See Ginger - Zingiber Officinale - Halia (Medicinal Herbs)

Marjoram

Can be found both dried or green. It's used to flavor fish, poultry, omelets, lamb, stew, stuffing
and tomato juice.

Mint

Aromatic with a cool flavor. Excellent in beverages, fish, lamb, cheese, soup, peas, carrots and
fruit desserts. (This is one plant that should come with a warning. I planted one plant and ended
up with it spreading throughout my gardening area. I now buy my mint from the store.)

Oregano

Strong, aromatic odor. Use whole or ground in tomato juice fish, eggs, pizza, omelets, chili, stew,
gravy, poultry, vegetables and of course Italian dishes. (This is another herb that is easy to grow
in the kitchen window and it too likes to have it's leaves pinched off so it can grow more.)

Paprika

A bright red pepper used in meat, vegetables and soups or as a garnish for potatoes, salads or
eggs.

Parsley

Best when used fresh, but can be used dried as a garnish or as a seasoning. Try using it in fish,
omelets, soups, meats, stuffing and mixed greens. (Another kitchen window plant.)

Rosemary

Very aromatic. Can be used fresh or dried. Season fish, stuffing, beef, lamb, poultry, onions,
eggs, bread and potatoes. Great in dressings. (This is an outside plant that starts out small and
becomes enough for a large neighborhood to share. And it gets bigger every year.) See ROSEMARY - Rosmarinus Officinalis (Medicinal Herbs)

Saffron

Orange-yellow n color. It will flavor and color foods. Use in soup, chicken, rice and breads.
(This herb is a little expensive to buy.)

Sage

Can be used fresh or dried. The flowers can be used in salads. May be used in tomato juice,
fish, omelets, beef, poultry, stuffing, cheese spread and breads. (This is another porch plant. I
do have to plant it yearly but the use of fresh sage is worth it. As the plant dies out I break off
small branches and hang in my kitchen to dry and then store in a plastic bag. To use, I simply
pull the leaf off it's stem and rub the leaves between my palms.)

Tarragon

Leaves have a pungent, hot taste. Use to flavor sauces, salads, fish, poultry, tomatoes, eggs,
green beans, carrots and dressings.

Thyme

Sprinkle the leaves on fish or poultry before broiling or baking and throw a few springs directly
on coals shortly before meat is finished grilling.

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