How to Get the Most From Your Spices & Herbs Wednesday, April 30 2014
From the slightly bitter, yet sweet taste of cinnamon, to the peppery, woodsy flavor of rosemary, spices add complexity to your cooking and enhance the natural flavors of whatever they mingle with. They have the power to elevate even the simplest of dishes and transform them into something memorable.
Accordingly, methods of buying, storing and using spices plays a critical role in the success of your meals. Take a look at our top five tips for getting the most from your spices to take your cooking to a whole new level.
1. Buy In Small Quantities
For maximum freshness and flavor, buy less at once and restock your spices often. While spices will last for a few years and won’t necessarily “spoil”, old spices and herbs will lose their potency and become flavorless.
2. Store Properly
Store your spices in airtight containers and limit their exposure to light, heat and humidity. When using spices while cooking, avoid sprinkling spices directly from the jar over hot cookware. Moisture can easily enter your container and weaken your spice’s flavor.
3. Buy Quality
Good quality spices can really define a meal. Cheap spices are cheap for a reason and often containing fillers like flour.
4. Grind Your Own Spices
Whole spices last longer and offer better flavor. Use a coffee grinder for convenience, or grind your spices the old-fashioned way with a mortar and pestle. For an even stronger flavor, toast whole spices before grinding.
5. Opt For Organic
Conventional spices are often irradiated and contain harmful chemicals, additives and GMOs. When you buy organic, you can enjoy your home cooked meals in good health and with confidence.