Anyone who has ever done any type of baking or cooking knows that the food just tastes better with seasoning. This can be as simple as adding salt and pepper, or as complicated as using a blend of spices for the perfect taste. What is surprising to some people is pepper is actually an herb.
Pepper is a berry from the Piper Nigrum plant. Black and white pepper are made from the same plant. The un-ripened berries are used for the black pepper while the red, ripe ones are used for the white pepper.
Along with the natural organic herb, pepper, many other herbs are used to create culinary masterpieces. Nutmeg, cloves, and cinnamon are common varieties of herbs grown in many kitchen herb gardens. Sage, oregano and basil are three more popular culinary herbs.
As more and more plants were discovered for their pungent flavor, people started making extraordinary dishes. What would a roast beef sandwich be without horseradish? Try making a good breakfast sausage when there isn’t sage garden herbs around. Herb bread would just be plain old bread if it were not for the flavorful little buggers.
One of the most beneficial attributes to growing kitchen herbs is that herbs have no calories, have no fatty acids, no cholesterol, and generally no bad ingredients at all. They just have a unique taste that wakes the taste buds in all of us.
When using herbs for cooking, it is important to remember that a little goes a long way. Too much can actually distract you from the natural flavor of the food. The entire concept of using herbs is to highlight the natural flavors. Too much can overpower the food and result in a tossed meal.
Did you know that there is even an herb that adds the sweetness of sugar without all the calories? This is an herb known as STEVIA. Although this herb cannot be sold as a sweetener for foods, it can be used in place of sugar. One leaf has enough sweetener in it to sweeten a glass of lemonade. Imagine a hot summer day when the only thing that can cool you off is a frosty glass of ice cold tea! You can brew the tea from your backyard herb garden, pour it over the ice, add a leaf off the stevia plant and one off the lemon balm plant, and you have a wonderful sweetened glass of ice cold lemon tea! You can even use this herb in sauces, salad dressings or even your salsa instead of sugar to cut down on the calories.
Many of the meat marinades on the market get their flavoring from natural organic herbs. You can use dill with lemon balm on fish. Saffron in your rice is always a delight. Putting rosemary on a pork roast or lamb results in a mouth-watering treat. With so many different herbs on this planet, there is something for every dish you could possibly create.
Having herbs in the kitchen is a wonderful experience for the novice cook to the master chef. With the right blend of herbs, you too can make meat rubs, soup and stew bases, or how about trying a new flavor for your morning coffee or tea.
This is but a small excerpt from my new ebook: Holistic Herbs ~ A Beginners Guide to Herbal Gardening. If you would like to learn more about Holistic Herbs, Landscape and Garden design, Click Here to pick up your copy today! I’ve also included 12 free bonus books as well. Learn how to Harvest and Dry Herbs Here!
Other Articles of Interest: