As the holiday season is approaching, there are many possibilities of using herbs in a variety of dishes. Imagine the aroma of your favorite herbs cooked with white wine, olive oil, garlic or lemon zest, filling the house and adding warmth to the entire kitchen.
Luckily dried herbs are available year round. But if you prefer fresh herbs, some can be grown in the fall or during the mild winter. Herbs which do well in the fall or mild winter are parsley, sage, rosemary, thyme, cilantro, lavender, mint, and chives. It takes only a few weeks for them to grow and harvest for your meals.
When substituting dried for fresh herbs, 1 teaspoon of dried herb can be used in place of 1 tablespoon of fresh herbs. Using herbs and spices can help cut back on salt in your diet. Excessive salt intake can have a negative effect on the health of your heart and kidney. The average American eats about 3,400 mg of sodium a day. The American Heart Association recommends no more than 2,300 milligrams or 1 teaspoon of salt a day.
Herbs can be used in most dishes to add an extra punch or as a garnish to make an entrée looks more appealing. Cilantro is usually good in tacos, soap, and salad. Lavender is often seen in sweet or savory dishes. See table for more ideas.
Spices and Herbs to Use for Flavorings
- Basil, bay leaf, caraway, curry, dill, dry mustard, garlic, mace, marjoram, nutmeg, onion powder, parsley, pepper, rosemary, sage
- Basil, cloves, mace, nutmeg, oregano, paprika, parsley, saffron, sage, savory, tarragon, thyme, turmeric
- Chervil, curry, dill, dry mustard, garlic or garlic powder, nutmeg, onion powder, paprika, parsley, rosemary, tarragon
- Basil, bay leaf, chervil, curry, dill, dry mustard, marjoram, paprika, pepper, tarragon, turmeric
- Cloves, curry, dill, garlic or garlic powder, mace, mint, oregano, parsley, rosemary, tarragon, thyme
- Basil, caraway, chives, cloves, garlic or garlic powder, onion powder, rosemary, thyme Veal Basil, bay leaf, curry, ginger, marjoram, oregano, paprika
- Basil, dill, garlic or garlic powder, ginger, mace, marjoram, nutmeg, onion powder, tarragon
- Allspice, anise, cinnamon, cloves, ginger, mace, nutmeg, cardamom, vanilla extract, other extracts
Written by: Katelyn Tran, MPH, RD, CNSC