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Herbs, Spices And Seasonings

Most whole grains, vegetables and beans have bland flavors that would be boring without herbs, spices or other seasonings. Spices are usually seeds, used whole or ground. Some spices are roots, bark or other plant parts, either fresh (as in ginger root) or dried (as in cinnamon bark.) Herbs and spices contain a variety of vitamins, minerals and phytochemicals, but they are usually used in such small amounts that they do not make a significant contribution of either calories or other nutrients to your diet.

 


While any leafy green may be called an herb, we usually reserve this word for the leafy parts of highly-flavored plants that are used for seasoning. Their assertive flavors and aromas add interest and distinction to recipes of different cultures. You can grow your own fresh herbs or buy them in supermarkets or ethnic markets. Dried herbs are convenient and available in every supermarket. Pungent herbs such as oregano or sage keep plenty of flavor when dried, but others such as dried basil or parsley have little flavor.

Dried herbs and spices should be stored in closed containers in a dark, cool place. They may lose flavor in a few months or last for many years; if in doubt, rub a little between your fingers and see if they still have a distinctive odor. If there's no fragrance, they will not add any flavor to your food. Whole seeds keep their flavor much longer than ground spices.

Herbs

Fresh or Dried)

Basil

Bay leaves

Bouquet garni

Chervil

Chives

Cilantro, coriander, Chinese parsley

Dill weed

Fennel

Garlic

Ginger root

Lemon grass

Marjoram

Mint

Oregano

Parsley

Parsley, Italian or flat

Rosemary

Sage

Tarragon

Thyme

All other fresh or dried herbs

 

Spices and Spice Mixes

Allspice

Anise

Apple pie spice mix

Cajun spice mix

Cayenne pepper

Caraway seeds

Cardamom

Celery seeds

Chili powder

Chinese five spice mix

Cinnamon

Cloves

Coriander seeds

Cumin seeds

Curry powder

Dill seeds

Fennel seeds

Fennugreek seeds

Garam masala mix

Ginger

Mace

Marjoram

Mustard, dried

Mustard seeds

Nutmeg

Oregano

Paprika

Pepper, black

Pepper, red

Pepper, white

Pepper, cayenne

Pickling spices

Poppy seeds

Pumpkin pie spice mix

Saffron

Sesame seeds

Tumeric

Vanilla beans

Spice mixes

All other spices and spice mixes

 

Condiments and Other Seasonings

Anchovy paste

Bean dip

Black bean sauce,Asian

Bouillon cubes, granules, paste,

liquid

Catsup

Curry pastes

Fish sauce,Asian

Ginger, pickled

Hoisin sauce

Horseradish

Hot pepper sauces

Liquid smoke seasoning

Mustard, prepared

Olives

Oyster sauce

Pickles, unsweetened

Salsa

Steak sauces

Tabasco sauce

Vanilla extract

Vinegar

Wasabi

Worcestershire sauce

Other seasoning sauces and condiments

July 30th, 2013
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About the Author: Gabe Mirkin, MD

Sports medicine doctor, fitness guru and long-time radio host Gabe Mirkin, M.D., brings you news and tips for your healthful lifestyle. A practicing physician for more than 50 years and a radio talk show host for 25 years, Dr. Mirkin is a graduate of Harvard University and Baylor University College of Medicine. He is board-certified in four specialties: Sports Medicine, Allergy and Immunology, Pediatrics and Pediatric Immunology. The Dr. Mirkin Show, his call-in show on fitness and health, was syndicated in more than 120 cities. Read More
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