Weekly Tip : Spicing Things Up


As for rosemary, I let it run all over my garden walls, not only because my bees love it but because it is the herb sacred to remembrance and to friendship, whence a sprig of it hath a dumb language. -  Sir Thomas Moore

A simple way to enhance flavor

Since this is the time of the year when we can grow herbs in pots, or buy them in bulk at our local supermarkets, I wanted to share some storage and usage tips.

Fresh basil


In cooked food, if you are clipping herbs from your garden or a potted plant, you will get the most flavor by chopping and slightly sautéing them when adding them to other ingredients.  This process releases their oils and enhances their flavor.

The same procedure should be followed if you use dry herbs and spices.

Heat, in general, reduces the color and flavor of dried herbs and spices.  Dried herbs should be kept out of sunlight in a cool place.

Red spices, such as chili powder, cayenne pepper, etc., should be kept in the refrigerator.  Flavor will be preserved and bug infestations will be eliminated.

Seeds, such as poppy and sesame, should be kept in the freezer to prevent them from going rancid.

As a rule of thumb, any spices and herbs not used within 12 to 18 months should be replaced.  This will guarantee the best flavor.

If you have the room to grow your own herbs, you will get the best value for your dollar.  At the end of the summer, any remaining herbs can be dried for use over the winter.

For storage tips check out this Real Simple article.

Put your fresh herbs in a vase with some flowers and you have a pretty and useful table centerpiece.




Patricia Rio
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