🔕 🔔
Loading…

My Basket ()

All questions

Dried (or fresh) spices and herbs-your favorites

What dried spices and herbs are in your pantry? Which are your favorites? How do you combine them? What dish might you typically use them for? East or west, let the twain meet--looking for inspiration. Fresh herbs ok too.

Lisanne is a trusted home cook.

asked over 4 years ago
17 answers 1705 views
E4b7660b f3f6 4873 bd6d 2130a16403fb  img 1088
drbabs

Barbara is a trusted source on General Cooking.

added over 4 years ago

One of my favorites is za'atar. It's a combination of thyme, sumac and sesame seeds and is used in middle eastern cooking. I discovered it on this site and I use it in tabouli, with fish and pasta, on flatbread, in soups. The roast potato recipe on this site is wonderful. Here's a link to the Food52 recipes using za'atar:
http://food52.com/recipe...

C1aa93d7 c7a4 4560 aa6d 6dca74cc98ca  smokin tokyo
added over 4 years ago

While I love this combination, be aware that some people can be allergic to sumac. My entire face swelled up.

E4b7660b f3f6 4873 bd6d 2130a16403fb  img 1088
drbabs

Barbara is a trusted source on General Cooking.

added over 4 years ago

Thanks for telling me!

549d9fb3 53ef 4170 b68e 8bae2e055be7  dsc 0048b
added over 4 years ago

za'ater is really good sprinkled with a little olive oil on parsnip and then roasted.

46d131cd f2c2 45e6 a471 166131eec02e  jess otoole
added over 4 years ago

I'm with @drbabs- Middle Eastern spices are my favorite.

I love dried chiles in all forms: whole, crushed flakes, and powdered. Here is a recipe for Coffee-Baked Sweet Potatoes sprinkled with a cinnamon-chile mix
http://www.food52.com/recipes...

Or a Moroccan Carrot and Olive Salad with chile and black sesame

http://www.food52.com/recipes...

I toss whole (lightly crushed) cardamom pods and a cinnamon stick into breakfast preparations of grains like couscous and quinoa

http://www.food52.com/recipes...
http://www.food52.com/recipes...

I also use fennel seeds often to lend their anise flavor to pasta sauces with tomato or soups. Saffron is a favorite too- in rice, soup, or I've even baked saffron bread rolls.

671b6c39 4898 435f 92c5 89cd9b925088  img 3788
added over 4 years ago

I have an herb garden, but i often use dried herbs de Provence for salad, fish, chicken...just about anything. Asian 5 spice for pork or chicken...garam masala added at the last minute to roast cauliflower

48dd002c 4c45 4b84 8006 ac8614d467cd  dsc00859 2
creamtea

Lisanne is a trusted home cook.

added over 4 years ago

these are great! It's great to be able to consider and try out new possibilities. I love all these answers.

8a5161fb 3215 4036 ad80 9f60a53189da  buddhacat
SKK
added over 4 years ago

Every summer I buy organic lavender, let it dry and then grind it for uses in any recipe needing lavender. Love it! Also found some Tonka Beans here in the US and have those in my cupboard now. A little bit of that goes a long way. Two other spices I have added I learned about here at Food 52 are Grains of Paradise and Quantre Spice. And I learned here there is Mexican Oregano which is distinct from Italian Oregano and I have that also.

Also every summer I buy chilis at the Farmer's Market and dehydrate and grind them so I always have wonderful chili spices. And yes to everything that has already been said.

783b5334 3415 40c6 8994 2245307bc4b2  img 0036
added over 4 years ago

I recently cooked for a ski vacation - approx 20 skiers each night. I took some spices, because I think they are expensive to buy for a one-week vacation. I used the following more than anything: fennel, cumin, basil, and thyme. While we had some other spice blends, I used the above more than anything else (outside of salt/pepper/citrus). BTW, we ate dinner, breakfast and packed lunches for $42 per person for the week! They thought I was crazy for saving the broth from the chicken taco/burrito for the ribollita, but I think I proved my point!

67544da8 1862 4539 8ec8 2d9dfc2601bb  dsc 0122.nef 1
added over 4 years ago

I'm in a phase where my spice blend usage has become agnostic to the cuisine its used for.At present, I 'm experimenting a lot by incorporating middle eastern/north African spices into Indian cooking. My latest from last week is a traditional rice dish from the arid Thar desert regions of Rajasthan using spices from the Sahara desert, viz, north african spice blends like Harissa & Ras el Hanout.
http://www.panfusine.com...

48dd002c 4c45 4b84 8006 ac8614d467cd  dsc00859 2
creamtea

Lisanne is a trusted home cook.

added over 4 years ago

Silk Road cooking! I enjoyed that blog entry, Panfusine.

549d9fb3 53ef 4170 b68e 8bae2e055be7  dsc 0048b
added over 4 years ago

I have a large spice collection and many fresh herbs growing and some dried, but by far my favorite of the things I've tried in the last few years is Aleppo pepper. I started using it about 3 or more years ago, hadn't heard about it before and found that I just love it. It is not only great in Turkish and middle eastern dishes. I use it in lieu of cayenne or fresh peppers in many recipes as well. It has some heat, but is not too hot for wimpy me and provides a slghtly smoky touch.

48dd002c 4c45 4b84 8006 ac8614d467cd  dsc00859 2
creamtea

Lisanne is a trusted home cook.

added over 4 years ago

I agree, I love Aleppo pepper. I find it a little "fruity" when fresh. I always use it to perk up eggs, sometimes on salads, and always instead of generic red pepper flakes.

46d131cd f2c2 45e6 a471 166131eec02e  jess otoole
added over 4 years ago

I love crushed aleppo pepper flakes too! They have a depth and fruity note that regular crushed red pepper lacks. Great answer!

4798a9c2 4c90 45e5 a5be 81bcb1f69c5c  junechamp
ChefJune

June is a trusted source on General Cooking.

added over 4 years ago

I love to use herbs and spices, both fresh and dried, and in the case of spices, toasted. For me, it's more a case of what don't I like. and that would be fresh cilantro. I'm also cautious with cumin. for me it can get too overpowering.

I really love adding a small percentage of Sichuan peppercorns into my pepper mill. Without making things "hot," it adds a dimension I find appealing.

My go-to "secret ingredient" for many dishes is dried herbes de Provence. I especially like the blend sold at Polcari's Coffee Shop on the corner of Salem and Parmenter in the North End of Boston. Yes, they send it to me! ;)

My favorite fresh herb is marjoram. Since it's not always available in reasonable quantities in stores, I grow my own.

Love also to play with different salts. Been doing that since 2004, when I first enjoyed Michael Laiskonis' Egg filled with Chocolate Mousse and topped with Maldon Sea Salt. The pink salt from the Murray River in Australia has an amazing affinity for ripe heirloom tomatoes!

33f00148 b116 47f0 8789 76ae3bdb2bbb  photo 1
added over 4 years ago

I'm a big aleppo pepper fan too. It's so much less hot with more flavor, which my stomach appreciates. Also a big fan of herbes de provence on just about anything. For the rest of my herbs, I always use fresh rather than dried.