It’s easy to use herbs, spices and seasonings to spice up any meal. The wide variety of herbs and spices available to consumers today make it a breeze to whip up healthy and flavorful meals that not only taste great, but promote good health.
Here are a few suggestions and tips on adding herbs, spices and seasonings to spice up any meal.
Basil is a multi talented herb that is a natural anti-inflammatory and antioxidant. It is high in magnesium and promotes heart health. This herb also guards against harmful bacterias, especially those often found on raw foods such as leafy greens, vegetables and fruits.
Although basil is widely used in Italian dishes with tomato sauces, basil is excellent for use in pasta dishes with cheese sauces or to top steamed vegetables. A handful of leaves chopped up and added to biscuit or bread dough with a light pinch of sea salt spread on top before baking is a refreshing change from store bought bread. Fresh picked leaves added to a lettuce or fruit salad also adds a flavorful antioxidant boost to a hum drum salad.
Fresh basil leaves are best added to the dish in the last few minutes of cooking to retain the flavor. If using dry basil, the herb can be added at the preparation stage.
Rosemary is an herb that comes from a Mediterranean shrub and has a pine like flavor. It is a strong antioxidant and has natural anti-inflammatory benefits. Rosemary, when combined with other spices and herbs like onion, garlic, basic, oregano, and thyme, displays synergistic qualities. Because of these qualities, it is always beneficial to mix rosemary with any of these other spices or herbs when marinating meat or added to a dish.
This herb is often used in Italian cooking, meats, and some vegetables. Roasting potatoes in a mixture of rosemary, garlic, onion, and olive oil makes preparing a dish a breeze while giving your family a dose of powerful antioxidants and anti-cancer causing agents.
The common, inexpensive garlic bulb is an excellent health choice when it comes to spicing up food flavor. Garlic is a bulb that separates easily and has to be peeled or pressed. It is a natural antibiotic and antioxidant. Garlic is also known for promoting heart health and can lower cholesterol.
Often used mainly in a marinade for meat, garlic can be added to almost any food. Finely chopped and lightly sauteed, it can add a wonderful flavor and health boost to rice, pasta, and steamed vegetables. It can be added to tomato and alfredo sauces in a pureed, chopped, or chunk form. The longer garlic is cooked, the milder the flavor.
Cinnamon is a spice derived from the inner bark of Asian trees. Strips of the bark are dried until they form curled sticks.
While cinnamon is commonly known for being in sweets and desserts, this spice can be used to flavor meat and vegetables, stews, and fruits.
Cinnamon has one of the highest antioxidant levels of the Indian spices, is an anti-diabetic agent that lowers blood sugar, and helps in the reduction of cholesterol.
While there are many salt based flavorings and seasonings available on the market, there are also options available that are not salt and chemical based.
Jalapenos are a wonderful flavoring for those who enjoy a spicy hot taste. While often eaten raw, jalapenos can also be sauteed with garlic and onion for an awesome condiment.
Onions, a common vegetable root, not only delivers a unique flavor but also contains anti-bacterial properties. Sauteed onions, mushrooms, and peppers can be added as ingredients in a recipe or placed as a side dish all by themselves.
Onions can be eaten raw, sauteed, roasted, fried, or grilled. It is an adaptable seasoning that can be added in some form to almost any meal.
Spice Up That Meal
As you can see, using herbs, spices and seasonings to spice up any meal doesn’t take almost any effort. A pinch, a dash, or a sprinkle of these not only adds great flavor to your meals, but packs a healthy punch at the same time.