The Natural Gourmet: Make Your Own Spice Mixtures and Herb Bundles

March 4, 2011

star anise

Forget Mrs. Dash and Emeril's Essences!

Learn how to make your own BAM with these 5 herb and spice recipes, courtesy of The Natural Gourmet:

Fresh Curry Blend: This green curry paste works great as a marinade (with some added oil) for meat, tofu, tempeh or veggies. You can also use it as a base for curries, soups, sauces, or stir-fries. Hot and spicy herbs can help cut fat and stimulate digestive juices, so bring on the fire!

Blend together:
3 cloves garlic
3 chilis
1/2 teaspoon turmeric
1/2 teaspoon coriander
1 teaspoon dry mustard
(Note: stores in fridge, 4 to 6 weeks)

curry paste

Pickling Spice: You can use this spice blend to give a pickle flavor to virtually any vegetable. Great with Kirby cucumbers, okra carrots, zucchini, and eggplant, just to name a few. Check out this post "How To Make Pickles" on eHow and get pickling!

Add 1 tablespoon of each of the following:
Black peppercorns
Yellow mustard seeds
Hot red pepper flakes
Allspice
Dill seed
Crushed mace (or a pinch of grated nutmeg)
Fennel (optional)
2-inch cinnamon stick
2 crumbled bay leaves
1 teaspoon cloves
2 tablespoons ground ginger

Five Spice Powder: This spice mixture gives off a wonderful, sweet-and-spicy aroma and licorice flavor from the anise. Delicious in poaching liquid for pears, apples and plums.

Star Anise
Cassia or cinnamon
Fagara (also known as Szechwan Pepper)
Fennel
Cloves
(Note: Used in Asian cooking. Helps dispel gas, relieve motion sickness, and nausea)

Dried Bouquet Garni: Wonderful in long-simmering recipes, including soups and sauces, with roasts, and to flavor vinegars. Also, great combined with garlic and olive oil. (Note: the shelf life of dried herbs is 6 to 9 months; store in a cool, dark place)

1 teaspoon of parsley
1 bay leaf
1 teaspoon of thyme

herb bundle

Wrap the parsley, bay leaf and thyme in cheese cheesecloth and tie with natural cooking twine:

cheesecloth

Herbes de Provence: Great aromatic herb bundle with Mediterranean cooking, including soups, stews, stuffing, eggplant and lamb dishes.

2 to 3 parts thyme
1 part oregano
1 part rosemary
1 part marjoram
1 part savory
(Optional: lavender and fennel - use both sparingly!)

Comments

dasi smith's picture

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