Saturday, March 25, 2017


Search out the following herbs and spices and add zest to your meals.  Some come both fresh and dried.

Annatto: Also known as achiote are orange red seeds.Used to flavor soups,stews and rice and fish dishes.  The seeds are often steeped in oil, which takes on the color of the annatto.

Anise:  This wild herb has a slightly minty and licorice flavor; gives a tasty flavor to beverages and fruit salads.

Basil:  Pairs well with parmesan, ricotta and mozzarella cheeses, tomatoes, pasta, eggs; gives off an aroma of lemon,mint and licorice.

Berbere:  This is a popular spice used in many Ethiopian dishes.  Contains allspice, coriander, paprika, ginger, nutmeg, cinnamon, cardamom, onion and fenugreek.  used to season vegetables and meat.

Cinnamon:  Made from leaves and sticks of the cinnamon plant and are used to flavor puddings, cereals and beverages.

Chervil:  The leaves resemble those of the carrots and are used fresh and dried, added to cream based soups, scrambled eggs, green salads and fish dishes.

Chives:  Used in egg dishes, cream cheese, sauces and soups, root vegetables, particularly potatoes.

Cilantro:  The fresh leaves are used in soups, stews, curries, vegetables and salads.  It has a lemony, floral flavor and used in Thai, Indian and Mexican cuisine.

Coriander:  The fresh leaves are used in stews, soups and vegetable dishes.  The seeds are crushed and used to thicken sauces such as curries.

Culantro:  Used in soups, curries and noodle dishes. It comes with serrated leaves and although related to cilantro has a deeper aroma.

Curry Leaf:  The aroma reminds one of a mix of citrus and anise. These leaves are native to India and are green on top and pale on the bottom, mainly used in legumes and vegetables and savory pastries such as samosa.

Dill :  Fine and feathery leaves, used in mild cheeses, omelets, herrings, salmon.  The seeds are added to stews, rice and breads.

Garam Masala:  A mix of cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, cardamom, mace, peppercorns, coriander and cumin.  Used in Indian recipes and breads.

Ginger:  The ginger root has pale brown skin and cream-colored flesh.  Scrape off the skin and then slice, chop or grate to add to vegetable, meat, poultry and seafood dishes.  Also used in puddings and cakes.

Lemongrass:  A coarse tropical grass also called citronella.  The bulb and the white portion of the stalk are used as seasonings.  Sliced or chopped lemongrass can be used in soups, sauces and stir-fry. Use in Thai, Vietnamese cuisines.

Mint:  Used in herb teas, meat, poultry,fish and sweet dishes.  Mint has a deep green color and has a cooling effect.

Nutmeg:  is a light brown kernel encased in a web of mace and both spices are aromatic, used in sweet dishes, eggnog, winter squash, potatoes, carrots and cauliflower.

Oregano:  native to the Mediterranean,has soft green leaves, pungent and robust aroma, used in stews, soups, casseroles and sauces.

Parsley:  Used in Middle Eastern cooking and can be added to a variety of dishes, such as stews, salads, fish, poultry, pasta, rice, tabbouleh or used as garnish.

Ras el Hanout:  A mixture of many spices and is basic to Moroccan cooking.

Rosemary:  Can be found year round in the grocery store.  Used in meat, chicken, vegetable dishes and goes well with potatoes.

Sage:  Used in stuffing, salads, sauces and pasta dishes.

Thyme:  A small grayish green leaf herb, which is used to season meat, poultry, vegetable dishes, stews and soups.  Thyme is available fresh yer round in the grocery store.

Zatar:  This is a tangy blend of herbs and spices such as thyme,oregano, toasted sesame seeds and sumac; can be used to season meats or mixed with plain yogurt and a drizzle of olive oil for a dip.


2 tsps                             Ground black pepper
2 tsps                               Sage
2 tsps                               Allspice
2 tbs                                Thyme
8 tbs                                 Oregano
8 tbs                                 Onion Powder
3 tbs                                 Rosemary
3 tbs                                 Basil
3 tbs                                 Garlic Powder

Mix all ingredients together and store in a glass container.

Tip:  Stir up your own dried herb blend and liven up your dishes.  A plus when you have to reduce your salt intake.

Peace & Love
Spread joy wherever you go!