Grilled Zucchini and Corn
One delicious and simple combination from the Spice Blog consists of a few simple steps. The key is to prep the vegetables and allows time for marinating, getting the grill going, and getting the perfect grill marks. With only a handful of steps, some patience, and some knowledge of great spices, you will be able to create low-fat, nutritious dishes with the wonderful, warm quality of cooking with a grill right away.
Spices for Veggie Recipes
Maybe you like simple salt and pepper. Maybe you love spice and heat. Possibly you’re more into fresh herbs or citrus. However, you grill veggies, knowing a few spices for veggie recipes will optimize how you can combine your flavors.
Here is one simple mix to add some flavor and depth to your cooking:
- 2T Hungarian paprika
- 1t fresh black pepper
- 1t dried thyme
- 1t dried rosemary
- 2t garlic powder
- 1/2t ground chipotle pepper
Simply mix the ingredients together and season your veggies after they’ve been prepared but an hour before you plan to grill veggies so they have a chance to marinate.
Other great spices for prepping veggies include ones with an ethnic twist such as this Thai version:
- 1.5c packed cilantro
- 8 peeled cloves of garlic
- 2T fish or soy sauce
- 1T water
- 1t fresh black pepper
- 1t chili garlic sauce
- 1/3c vegetable oil
- 2lbs vegetables, cut into pieces
Process all the ingredients except the oil and vegetables in a processor and blend. Add the oil as it mixes. Toss the vegetables in the paste then let them sit an hour while preparing the grill. Serve with rice or noodles and enjoy!
This experience can be said of any spice, whether it’s cinnamon, nutmeg, or a dried herb. One particularly refreshing – and absolutely ancient – spice to try at is grinding cardamom, a pod that is perfect floating in coffee or in sweet or savory dishes, as explained here. To get an idea of how to test out these flavors and your mill, let’s check out an example of savory cardamom recipes perfect for dinner:
Spiced Chicken and Rice Pilaf
- 4 chicken legs
- 2-1/2T cooking oil
- Ground cardamom
- Salt to taste
- 1/8t fresh black pepper
- 1T butter, quartered
- 1 small onion, minced
- 1-1/2c basmati rice
- 1/4c raisins
- 2-1/4c stock
- 1/4c apple juice
Heat the oven to 450F. Coat 1T of oil on the chicken and season as desired. Roast it in a pan with a pad of butter on each leg about 30 minutes. Heat the rest of the oil in a pan, sauté the onion, then add the rice and spices, stirring well. Add raisins, broth, and salt to taste, boiling and simmering for 20 minutes while covered. Take the pan from the heat with the cover on for 5 more minutes before stirring it with a fork. Take out the chicken and remove the fat from the pan, putting it back on the heat with the juice and some spices, stirring until 2T is left. Serve the chicken with a side of rice, drizzled with the reduced sauce.
Cardamom recipes can be found in various places around the world and always offer incredible spice depth whether that recipe is for a cold or hot drink, a dessert, or meat, salad, or rice dish. In addition, practicing grinding spices means your recipes will explode with unmatched flavors.
Did you notice a difference by grinding Cardamom? Let us know!
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Check out more recipes, spice recommendations, storage tips, and more from our Spice Station blogs! Browse through our collection of spice blogs, here. Also, we’d love to hear from you! Have an idea for a spice blend, a favorite recipe, or blog post you want to write? Message us here today and we’d love to feature you and your ideas on our Spice Station blog!
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A Closer Look at Paprika
When cooking there are certain seasonings we tend to reach for more often than others. We use different seasoning blends which are quite popular these days, as well as different seasoned salts. Whatever those are, and then there’s our old faithful; salt and pepper. The majority of the time we may not be sure exactly what the seasoning’s actual ingredients are or how they should be used. Here, we will discuss paprika spice. This seasoning is used often but what should we be using it for exactly? Can we add it to everything? Let’s discuss this.
What is it? Paprika is Hungarian for pepper. It’s a versatile, brightly colored red-orange spice that comes from a variety of chili, bell, sweet and tomato peppers. The color comes from carotene which is rich in vitamin C. Assortments of peppers are sun-dried or smoked and ground or milled into a fine and tasty powder.
Types and Varieties
Varieties of paprika spice vary in color and taste. Some are sweeter in flavor while others have more of a spicy taste and are darker and richer in flavor. Commonly used varieties are Hungarian, Spanish which can be smoked or non-smoked.
Hungarian Paprika Spice- This version is non-smoked and carefully cured for several weeks in the sun until dried then finely ground by experienced spice millers.
Spanish varieties – Can be smoked or non-smoked. Peppers are smoked over oak logs for two weeks with the best Spanish varieties being slowly turned by hand in some cases. This more in-depth process will make for a more deep and richer flavor. Very impressive.
Reasons To Use
If you’re not convinced by now to go out and get your best version of this flavorful spice, here are more reasons you may want to consider:
1. It contains vitamin A, vitamin E, vitamin B and iron
2. May improve vision being filled with carotenoids
3. Is said to help reduce inflammation
4. May help control blood sugar levels
5. Promotes healthy blood flow because of natural vitamin E and iron
This versatile spice is used to add depth and smokiness to any savory dish. It’s also used frequently to add color and richness to different sauces, soups, and gravies, and also makes an amazing garnish when sprinkled over potato salads and soups. You’ll want to be sure to store it in a cool and dry place for freshness and prevent discoloration.
Paprika adds versatility to your meals and is an excellent addition to your spice cabinet. Read more articles here! Also, there are a lot of amazing recipes and suggested uses available for you to check out here to learn more.
Using the right spices is a good way to elevate your cooking to a whole new level. Of course, to make the most of the spices that you use, it’s important to keep them nice and fresh. After all, although spices can last for quite some time without going “bad,” they are always going to taste their best when they are kept as fresh as possible. These are a few tips that can help you enjoy your spices as much as possible.
How to Keep Spices Fresh: Avoid Buying Too Much at One Time
It’s definitely a good idea to keep a well-stocked spice cabinet. However, when purchasing spices that you don’t use in large quantities, you might want to purchase them in smaller containers. When purchasing spices that you use a lot of, however, buying in bigger containers can help you get the best deal.
Buy Whole Spices
It might seem easier to purchase spices that are ready for you to use, but spices that are pre-ground will not stay fresh as long as whole spices. Another good option is to purchase whole spices and keep your spices whole until you are ready to use them. You’ll need to purchase a spice grinder, but you’ll probably find that it’s worth it. This is a particularly good idea for spices that you might not use very often but that you want to keep on hand.
Keep Your Spices Sealed Up
It’s best to keep most spices well-sealed when they are not in use. If you purchase them in containers that seal well when they are closed, then they should be fine for storage. Otherwise, you may want to transfer your spices over to a sealed jar or bag for storage.
How to Keep Spices Fresh: Store Them in the Right Place
One thing that you should know if you’re wondering how to keep all of your spices fresh is that they should be kept in a cool, dark and dry place. Many people keep their spices over their stoves, but this is a mistake; after all, this area of your kitchen can become quite hot and humid, which can cause your spices to clump up or lose some of their freshness.
Keeping spices fresh will allow you to enjoy them a lot more. Fortunately, if you follow the tips above, you should be able to keep your spices nice and fresh until you are ready to use them.
What’s the Difference Between Coriander and Cilantro?
Many home cooks and kitchen novices often reach a point where they scratch their head and wonder what the difference between coriander and cilantro is. A very large number of people seem to think that they are a completely different plant or herb, however, this is not the case at all. Cilantro and coriander, both officially known as the Coriandrum Sativum species, are exactly the same plant and species, however, there is a regional difference in how the various plant parts are named.
The International Standard
Outside of the North American continent, the international standard is that coriander is the name given to the leaves and stalks of the Coriandrum Sativum plant. The other commonly used coriander derivative, the dried seeds, are also referred to as coriander outside of North America. In other words, the word cilantro is not used outside of North America to define anything involving the coriander plant, regardless of how it is processed or prepared.
The North American region of the world is the only place that uses the word cilantro. The root origin of the word “Cilantro” is Spanish, a name given by early Spaniards to the coriander leaves. North Americans do not refer to the coriander stalk or dried seeds as cilantro, rather, they refer to it as coriander. Referring to “cilantro leaves” as “coriander” in places like Mexico or the US might cause confusion.
The Reasons For The Distinction
The difference between coriander and cilantro boils down to how they are used in language and nothing more. Linguists and other language experts believe that there is a reason behind the distinction. Mexican cuisine uses fresh coriander leaves within recipes much more than any other region on the planet. With that fact considered it makes much more sense that there would be such a stark linguistic distinction between different parts of the plant.
The International Linguistic Rules Are Changing
Over the last decade, linguists have noticed that the word “cilantro” is being used much more frequently outside of North America. International language speakers are finding that it is much more convenient and logical to use a different word to mark the distinction between the very different parts of the coriander plant.
The Mango Mukwas Yogurt Sauce is fragrant, sweet Indian yogurt dip or raita. Traditionally, raitas are used as a mild sauce or side dish to mellow down spicy dishes, and to improve digestion. “Mukwas” is the traditional after-dinner breath-freshening mix, and makes a special addition to this raita.