Chopped, ground, whole, used fresh or dried. Cooks and aspiring cooks, B-Change presents these five simple herbs from around the world that you can add to can elevate the flavor of any dish you cook.
1. Italian Oregano
Typically, oregano is tossed liberally in pasta sauce, pizzas, grilled veggies and of course, meat. It’s a lot more packed with flavor when dried, so keep that in mind while cooking. A lovely way to use fresh oregano is for marination, adding it to the sauce since this herb goes well with spicy and tangy food [especially, and not surprisingly, tomatoes].
Quantity: Add lightly to the dish of your choice since the bitter tinge can be overwhelming if you’re heavy-handed with it.
Add this to: Pizza, pasta, sandwiches and grilled meat & veggies.
2. Indian Chives
Chives, with its subtle onion flavour, pairs sublimely with baked/mashed potatoes and in dips. Finely chop these and add them to any sauté or soup to add a hint of heat. It can uplift earthy flavors well – so it adds well to breads and spreads.
Quantity: Add generously because they are mild in flavor. Make sure they are not cooked too long since that may cause a loss of flavor and aroma.
Add this to: Soups, sautés and with potatoes.
3. Mexican Cilantro
In salsas, curries, dips, cilantro can work like magic. With a sharp kick that cuts through lime and sugar, it is ideal to add in Summer-y drinks and dips. It also works boldly as an addition to vinaigrettes for salads. For best results, use with lemon zest.
Quantity: Add a handful of leaves generously, making sure you leave the thin stems on [it only adds to the flavor].
Add this to: Dips, Salads and works well with lime.
4. Middle Eastern Parsley
A single whiff of this herb will help you tell it apart from Cilantro [they look very similar]. The most common mistake that cooks make with parsley is toss it in whole – grinding or finely chopped parsley adds a lot more zing to any dish. Divine with salads, parsley is good for your health too, filled with antioxidants and vitamins.
Quantity: Use parsley in controlled quantities, since it’s acidic flavor can overpower other elements of the dish.
Add this to: Salads and almost any other dish.
5. Mediterranean Rosemary
Garlic and Rosemary – It doesn’t get better than this. Rosemary’s fragrant taste does justice to roasted and barbecued foods. It’s also great to add a charred flavor to baked goods.
Add this to: Barbecued meat and baked savoury dishes.