Spices of Ten

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Spices of Ten


  • 1. Bay Leaf -- Used in stews, soup
  • and great with pot roast. Go easy.
  • Bay leaves are strong, especially
  • California bay leaves, which are the
  • kind most grocery stores stock.
  • I use 1/2 a leaf in my stews.
  • 2. Basil -- Ah, the taste of summer.
  • Who can resist fresh basil and
  • tomatoes from the garden tossed with
  • olive oil and garlic on a plate full
  • of pasta? Dried, it's wonderful in
  • soups, pasta dishes and chicken.
  • 3. Dill -- It's not just for pickles.
  • Try some dill sprinkled on fish,
  • chicken or even in a light cream soup.
  • 4. Garlic -- Nectar of the gods,
  • well, bulb of the gods anyway.
  • Garlic has a way of making the most
  • ordinary food gourmet.
  • Try sprinkling garlic powder
  • (not garlic salt) into a prepared
  • box of white cheddar macaroni and
  • cheese. Surprise! It's pretty good.
  • Fresh is always best. Squeeze it
  • from a press into almost anything.
  • Don't use with chocolate though.
  • 5. Ginger -- Sprinkle it in your
  • stir-fry, try it on baked chicken
  • breasts with a little soy sauce and
  • garlic. For fun, get it fresh (it's
  • that alien-looking root mass in the
  • produce department) and freeze it.
  • It will keep almost indefinitely
  • when frozen. To use, hack off a
  • piece, peel it and grate into your
  • recipe.


6. Nutmeg - If you can find nutmeg
nuts and the itty, bitty grater that
comes with it, buy it.
Once you've had freshly grated
nutmeg, the powdered stuff in the
jar is beneath you. Obviously an
ingredient in baking, it's also good
grated on sauteed squash, green beans,
and carrots.

7. Oregano -- A staple in Italian
cooking, it's also good in stews and
salad dressings.

8. Rosemary - This beautiful plant
grows wild in my garden and provides
an intoxicating aroma to meats,
stews and root veggies.
Try some crumbled in your carrots
for a change of pace.

9. Tarragon - An almost licorice
flavor, this delicate herb takes
front and center in vinaigrettes,
as a delicious sprinkle on the top
of baked or poached poultry and fish.

10. Thyme - It's strong and adds a
hint of character to an otherwise
pretty standard dish. Use it with
chicken, soups and beef.

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