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Increasing Demand of Spices & Seasoning Products - How to Sell Online

08/05/2020
by Ankush Mahajan

Seasonings, spices or tea products are extremely popular and in-demand food items with a rapidly expanding global audience. From the US to Asia, these indigenous food items have become an important part of every household kitchen. As the gourmet food trend grows among millennials, it is the right time to invest and become an online seller. 

With a Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) of around 4.8%, the seasoning and spices market grew from $12.7 billion in 2012 to $16.6 billion in 2019, according to Statista.

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These numbers convey how important and profitable this market is. To become an online seller of herbs and seasonings, the following things must be considered:

Requirements and regulations - Government regulations for in-home bottling of herbs, spices, and seasonings are different around the globe. For instance, some regions strictly require a kitchen to be compliant with local regulations, in order to store bottled spices in-house. If your area has similar requirements, we recommend renting a kitchen from a cooking school or restaurant. Check with your local authorities for complete requirements.

Food-handling permit and license - Before you start selling spices and herbs online, register for a food-handling permit and a business license with the local board. Be prepared for an authorized inspection of the bottling location.

Design a label - Next, design an authentic business label for your bottled spices. The label must include your business logo and other essential information, like the name of the seasoning and  spices included or a  food recipe that matches your product.

Find a reliable marketplace to sell - The most important part of becoming a successful online seller is finding the right marketplace. While retail giants like Amazon charge a hefty commission fee for selling on their platforms,  new but promising marketplaces charge a lot less and provide more exposure to your business.

The Seasoning Pantry, for instance, is one such promising and versatile marketplace for sellers to experience unhindered business growth. Launched on 25th July 2020, the new marketplace for seasonings, spices and tea products presents special offerings like:

  • Easy sign-up
  • Free listing
  • And zero subscription fee

Register on the marketplace to grow quickly as a seller and cater to a wider audience as the business expands. https://theseasoningpantry.com/all-vendors/

South American Chimichurri recipe - The Seasoning Pantry

07/10/2020
by Ankush Mahajan

Chimichurri is a traditional Latin American sauce, based on fresh herbs. It is a perfect seasoning mix for grilled meat, as it can be used in several ways: you can marinade the meat with it (best flavors with chicken breast or pork chops), baste the meat (steak, pork) while it is grilling/barbequing, or serve it as a side-dish or dipping sauce for your meats. The fresh herb and garlic flavor will definitely elevate your dishes.

 

There are two types of chimichurri, with a similar composition:

-       Green chimichurri: finely chopped parsley and oregano, garlic, chili, olive oil, white wine vinegar

-       Red chimichurri: chopped herbs, tomato, red bell pepper, garlic, olive oil, red wine vinegar

 

We recommend using fresh herbs, that you can easily grow yourself (blog6 link); this will help your sauce to really infuse packs of flavor to your meat and help it stand out.


For a typical Argentinian Chimichurri, you will need:

·      Fresh Italian parsley: 1.5 cups

·      Fresh oregano: 0.5 cups

·      Fresh garlic: 2 cloves

·      Olive oil: 1 cup

·      Salt: 1 pinch

·      Red chili: 1 tsp (chili flakes can be used instead)

·      White wine vinegar: 1 tbsp (juice from half a lemon can be used instead)

 

In only 10 minutes, you will have yourself a perfect mix to add a burst of flavor to your meat.

 

How to prepare:

1.     Wash the fresh parsley and remove all dirt. Pat it dry and remove all water.

2.     Chop the parsley leaves, without the stems, into medium size. Repeat with oregano leaves.

3.     Mince the garlic.

4.     Combine all ingredients together.

5.     Rest the chimichurri for 30 min in the fridge, to allow the flavors to infuse into the oil.

6.     Ready to use!

 

The ready-made chimichurri will last 3-4 days in the fridge and, although the acid in the vinegar may change the color of the herbs, the flavor in the oil will still be pungent and the taste will still be delivered.

 Enjoy!


Buy finest quality of spices and seasoning blends at The Seasoning Pantry at discounted prices: https://theseasoningpantry.com

Asian Spices and Herbs

07/10/2020
by Ankush Mahajan

The Asian cuisine is a blend of unique and tasty recipes, with bold flavours and colourful looks. It has become more and more popular in the past decades, because people can more easily travel to the area and fall in love with the local dishes. Although they are collected under the name of “Asian cuisine”, there are quite large differences between Vietnamese and Lebanese cuisines, between Chinese and Indian cuisines, between Korean and Iranian cuisines.


Here is a non-exhaustive list of herbs and spices, commonly used in Asian cuisine:

 1.   Chilies: Large, medium or small, chilies can definitely spice up your dishes! For a milder flavor of the chilies, you should remove the seeds and inner tissue from the chili, before cooking it.

2.    Curry leaves: Very common in Indian food, they can be used both fresh and dried.

3.    Ginger: Can be found in almost all Asian cuisines, due to its flavor and aroma - sweet or savory dishes.

4.    Lemongrass: Particularly used in Thai cooking, lemongrass gives a citrus taste to Thai dishes.

5.    Turmeric: A spice and a medicinal herb, is very commonly found in Indian dishes, with a strong yellow color and a distinctive flavor.

6.   Cumin: Asian cuisines often use cumin, either roasted, grounded or in curry paste. Two types of cumin are available: white (mostly in Southeast Asian cuisine) and black (preferred in Indian cuisine).

7.   Coriander: Most parts of this plant are used in Asian dishes. The fresh leaves – cilantro – together with roots and stalks are used in Thai cuisine for making green curry paste. Indian and Chinese cuisine prefer only the leaves. Also, the coriander seeds are used in Asian cuisines: dry roast it and grind it before adding it to your dish.

8.   Chives: Fresh Chinese chives have a very fragrant taste. Chop them before adding them to stir fry dishes or spring rolls.

9.   Cinnamon: Cinnamon is obtained from the inner bark of several trees. It can be found either as grinded powder or as a rolled-up stick, the latter being more flavorsome and aromatic (remove from the dish before serving). Cinnamon can be used in a variety of dishes, sweet or savory, snacks or teas.

10.  Galangal: Very similar in appearance with ginger, galangal actually has very well-defined circles around it. Galangal is often used in Thai dishes for its bitter aroma.

11.  Kaffir lime leaves: Alongside lemongrass and galangal, kaffir lime leaves are an essential ingredient in Thai cuisine. They belong to the citrus family, giving dishes a distinctive citrus fragrance with floral accents.

12.  Fenugreek leaves and seeds: It is a common ingredient in Indian cuisine. The seeds are quite popular for making curry paste.

13.  Star anise: It is a versatile spice with a licorice flavor, used in Asian cuisine in a variety of soups, stews, but also desserts and in beverages.


To Buy Spices & Herbs at Discounted Rates, please visit here: https://theseasoningpantry.com/spices/

Healthy Eating, Healthy Living - The Seasoning Pantry

07/10/2020
by Ankush Mahajan

 

We are going through strange times now, with many of us restructuring our professional and personal lives, adapting to lockdown measures and practicing physical distancing. On top of that, gym trainings or outdoor football games may have been cancelled for the rest of 2020.


That is why we need to focus our attention on other means to maintain or improve our health status. While training in the living room may be possible, it is more likely that that bag of chips or that soda can are just more appealing, more comforting and more tempting.


Thus, a healthy lifestyle starts with what we eat. How do you start eating healthy, you ask? Begin with collecting pertinent information from licensed nutritionists or doctors specializing in nutrition; organize your meals in terms of content (based on any medical conditions you may suffer from) and schedule (at home, at work, in the city); buy smart when at the supermarket; supplement your food-related efforts with appropriate water intake; begin/continue/increase physical exercise, after consulting your personal physician.


A healthy lifestyle means balancing all the aspects mentioned before. However, do not mistake healthy eating with dieting: diversified meals in reasonable quantities sum up to healthy eating; dieting, on the other hand, implies restricting calories amounts, often to the detriment of diversified meals. The food you consume will ultimately cover not only your nutritional needs, but also your emotional needs; food doesn’t only nourish you, it also provides joy, calm and a state of wellbeing. Start browsing our website and look for the spices and seasoning blends that will enrich your culinary experiences.


In general, there are 2 main food groups: foods that can be eaten on a daily basis (even several times a day), and foods that should be eaten 2-3 times a week.

The basic foods include potatoes, rice, pasta, dairy products (milk, yoghurt, cottage cheese; not fermented cheeses), vegetables (raw or steamed, without any restrictions).


Poultry, beef, pork, fish and sea fruit should be eaten 2-3 times a week, with portions no bigger than one’s own palm. Beans, lentils, chickpeas and soy should be eaten 2 times a week. Other food groups that should be consumed in moderation (2-3 times a week) include fermented cheeses, eggs, deserts, fruits (even raw fruits should be eaten in moderation; and they should not be consumed as juices), dry nuts (walnuts, almonds, pistachio, pumpkin seeds or sun flower seeds). With us, you can find the right sauces or herbs for your meat or veggies, chilies that will take your sea fruits to the next level, as well as salts and sugars to finish off your dish.


What does smart shopping entail? Again, it all starts with planning: a week’s worth of shopping will ensure your finances’ stability, as well as your nutritional balance. Complement your current pantry items and fridge contents with your new shopping, remember to check the expiry date of all products, and most importantly, try to use a shopping list, rather than buying on a whim whatever is on display, appealing to your palate.


Scheduling your meals will also help prevent unwanted food intake: aim to include 3-5 meals in your day, both main meals and snacks. A balanced distribution of the different types of foods across meals in a day and across the span of a week will also ensure that your calorie intake doesn’t surpass the daily recommendations. There are several tools available for calorie counting: phone apps are the digital option, another would be simply checking the foods’ wrappings, as producers are bound to report these numbers broken down for all nutritional groups.


When it comes to preparing the food, oven cooking is easier to digest, can be stored for a longer time, and last but not least, is more flavoursome and aromatic. The Seasoning Pantry has everything and anything you need, so take your time to navigate our carefully selected products and begin your culinary adventures with us.


And, if you are already doing most of these things, remember to tell your workmates, your friends or family to do so, as well. Eat healthy, stay healthy!

Research into culinary and medicinal herbs and spices

07/10/2020
by Ankush Mahajan

For centuries, herbs and spices have been used for culinary purposes, to enhance our savoring experiences through taste, aroma and color, as well as to preserve foods; in addition, traditional medicine has been using herbs, spices, & seasoning blends for medicinal purposes, both preventively and therapeutically.


Modern technologies used in research have confirmed what our ancestors already knew about spices and herbs: they are rich in natural compounds with therapeutic effects, from antioxidant and anti-inflammatory, to anticarcinogenic and cholesterol-lowering properties. Tannins, flavonoids, alkaloids and vitamins are some of the bioactive compounds that confer medicinal benefits to herbs and spices, such as clove, rosemary, sage, oregano and cinnamon.


Long term consumption of spices may protect us even against the development of acute and chronic diseases, helping us to maintain our health. Although the potential benefits of seasoning spices and herbs in protecting us against infectious, cardiovascular and neurodegenerative diseases cannot be negated, it is only in recent years that the Western world has taken a keen interest in studying them extensively. Culinary herbs and spices possess antioxidative, anti-inflammatory, anti-tumorigenic, anti-carcinogenic and glucose- and cholesterol-lowering activities. Indeed, spices may affect cognition and mood, as well as the gut microbiota, relating to risks of diabetes, cardiovascular diseases and other chronic conditions.


On average, up to 10% of Americans, surveyed in a US National and Health Nutrition Examination Survey, declare using spices such as ginger and chili pepper for health benefits (1), reasons for this being the lack of side effects of spices, the increased availability compared to traditional medicines, as well as the known health benefits of spices.


When surveyed about their predicted use of spices and herbs, about half of the participants in another study were interested in learning more about the health benefits of spices and admitted to currently using one or more spices, such as ginger, garlic or cinnamon, on a daily basis to promote their health and wellbeing (2).


Surely enough, in a long term study of health benefits of spices in a Chinese cohort, eating spicy foods almost every day decreased the risk of death by 14%, compared to consuming spicy foods less than once a week (3).


Interestingly, the consumption of spicy flavors reduced the salt intake and the blood pressure of participants in a randomized controlled trial (4), presumably by modifying the brain’s processing of the salty taste.


Given the close association of several metabolic diseases and age-related neurodegenerative diseases with oxidative processes in the human body, further research should focus on the use of herbs and spices as sources of antioxidants and the effects they have on specific markers of oxidation, upon consumption. And with time, we hope to see an even greater increase in the scientific evidence indicating the benefits of spices and culinary herbs in the overall maintenance of health and disease prevention.

1.         Barnes PM, Bloom B, Nahin RL. Complementary and alternative medicine use among adults and children: United States, 2007. Natl Health Stat Report. 2008(12):1-23.

2.         Isbill J, Kandiah J, Khubchandani J. Use of ethnic spices by adults in the United States: An exploratory study. Health Promot Perspect. 2018;8(1):33-40.

3.         Lv J, Qi L, Yu C, Yang L, Guo Y, Chen Y, et al. Consumption of spicy foods and total and cause specific mortality: population based cohort study. Bmj. 2015;351:h3942.

4.         Li Q, Cui Y, Jin R, Lang H, Yu H, Sun F, et al. Enjoyment of Spicy Flavor Enhances Central Salty-Taste Perception and Reduces Salt Intake and Blood Pressure. Hypertension. 2017;70(6):1291-9.

 

Herbs and spices in the Mediterranean diet

07/10/2020
by Admin Doe

It is no secret that the countries surrounding the Mediterranean Sea boast with having some of the oldest citizens in the world, and not the least, some of the healthiest citizens in the world. The life expectancy on the Greek island of Ikaria is around 90 years, however their oldest easily pass the three-digit landmark. This may be due to several factors: good physical condition, the midday nap and the Mediterranean diet, topped with optimism and a relaxed pace of living.

 

The Mediterranean diet consists of local fruits, vegetables and protein sources, particularly whole, single-ingredient foods. When it comes to the herbs and spices used in this type of cuisine, the list is long and the benefits are plenty (Table 1; adapted from (1)). This collection of spices and herbs has been used since ancient times in the local cuisines, but recent studies have actually proven that cooking them, either by boiling, steaming, stewing or simmering, enhances the content of antioxidant polyphenols and the subsequent properties that stem from using them; on the other hand, stir-frying and grilling seem to decrease the antioxidant amounts in these herbs (2).

 

Table 1. Total polyphenol content (in dry spices: mg/100g) of herbs and spices included in the Mediterranean diet

Name

Polyphenols

Basil

4318

Bay leaf

4170

Cumin seed

2038

Coriander seed

357

Dill

1250

Fennel

3949

Oregano

6367

Parsley

1584

Rosemary

2519

Sage

2920

Tarragon

NA

Thyme

1815

NA=not available

 

Basil

The basil herb is a particular element of the Mediterranean diet. It can be used in salads, tomato dishes and pasta sauces, the most famous of them being the Italian pesto. The French collection of herbs known as “herbes de Provence” also contains basil. And its medicinal utilities derive from anti-diabetic and anti-inflammatory properties, as well as lowering cholesterol levels and blood pressure.

Bay leaf

Bay leaf is quite common in Southern Europe and often cooked in sweet and savory dishes; it is also one of the components of the “bouquet garni”, a bundle of herbs, tied with string, used to prepare soups, broths and various stews. Bay leaf has been shown to have anti-diabetic and anti-inflammatory effects, as well as lowering cholesterol levels.

Coriander

Coriander leaves (known as cilantro) and coriander seeds are both extensively used for cooking, as well as pickling and flavoring sausages. And coriander seed extract seems to reduce serum glucose and cholesterol, while increasing renal function and urine elimination.

Cumin

Cumin is a wild growing plant in the Mediterranean region, used widely in cuisines around the world. The grounded seeds are often used for meat dishes, to flavor sauces, pickles and bread. The cumin seeds have anti-diabetic effects and reduce cholesterol levels.

Dill

Dill often accompanies seafood and is commonly used for pickling. Dill extracts have anti-diabetic and hypolipidemic effects.

Fennel

Fennel is a very versatile plant, as most parts of it (the bulb, the leaves, the flowers and the seeds) are edible and often used in Mediterranean dishes. Raw in salads, flavoring sausages and bread or herbal tea, these are the most common uses of this plant. Fennel has anti-diabetic and anti-inflammatory potential, as well as lowering cholesterol and triglycerides.

Oregano

Oregano, as a species, is comprised of several subspecies and is often used as a dried herb, and another ingredient in the herbal French collection known as “bouquet garni”. Oregano possesses anti-diabetic, hypolipidemic and anti-inflammatory properties.

Parsley

Flat leaf or curly leaf parsley are often used as garnish, as well as sauces and savory dishes. The Italian gremolata and the French persillade both contain butter-sautéed parsley; it can also be found in the herbal collections “bouquet garni” and “fines herbes”. Parsley has anti-diabetic, anti-hypertensive and anti-inflammatory properties.

Rosemary

Rosemary is particularly present in the French cuisine, in “bouquet garni”, as well as a wide variety of meat dishes, soups and stews. It has anti-diabetic, anti-hypertensive and anti-inflammatory properties.

Sage

The sage plant is native to the Mediterranean basin, used particularly to flavor pork dishes, stuffings, stews and sausages, and is one of the components of “bouquet garni”. Sage also possesses anti-diabetic, anti-hypertensive and anti-inflammatory properties.

Tarragon

Another typical French herb, tarragon is widely used in bernaise and bechamel sauces, as well as flavoring chicken meat. While it is a component of “bouquet garni”, tarragon can also be steeped in oils and vinegar to prepare dressings. It mostly possesses anti-diabetic properties.

Thyme

Thyme is another plant divided in multiple subspecies, used in a wide variety of savory dishes. It is a component of both “herbes de Provence” and “bouquet garni”. Thyme extract has been shown anti-inflammatory and hypolipidemic properties. 

 

 

1.         A. Bower, S. Marquez, E. G. de Mejia, The Health Benefits of Selected Culinary Herbs and Spices Found in the Traditional Mediterranean Diet. Critical Reviews in Food Science and Nutrition 56, 2728-2746 (2016).

2.         M. Chohan, G. Forster-Wilkins, E. I. Opara, Determination of the antioxidant capacity of culinary herbs subjected to various cooking and storage processes using the ABTS(*+) radical cation assay. Plant Foods Hum Nutr 63, 47-52 (2008).

 

Health Benefits of Tea Drinking - The Seasoning Pantry

07/10/2020
by Ankush Mahajan

Whether served as a hot beverage or as an iced refreshment, tea is an essential part of millions of lives, on a daily basis. Served early in the morning, a caffeinated tea can boost the energy and mood of the day; a cup of tea, maybe with a sweet dessert, can easily be enjoyed after lunch; or, at the end the day, a relaxing herbal tea can help to set the mood for a deep sleep.

 

One of the main benefits of drinking tea, though understated, is the actual hydration. Many of us these days consume too little amounts of water, as a result of oversight, forgetfulness or the assumption that juices/drinks can accommodate our water intake needs. However, the increased reports in headaches and migraines, stress and stress-associated illnesses can be traced back to the lack of proper hydration. For a healthy adult, the average recommended water intake is 2 liters/day (however, consult your physician whenever you decide to make drastic changes to your diet or routines). A simple tea routine, in the morning and in the evening, can easily increase your water intake, getting you closer to your body’s daily needs.

 

Apart from that, the varieties of teas available on the market these days ensures also that you take in a wide range of natural compounds, that have been shown to have beneficial effects for your health: polyphenols and catechins in green tea act as natural antioxidants (scavengers of reactive oxygen species) that prevent chronic diseases, such as cardiovascular and neurodegenerative diseases (1, 2), but also infectious diseases (3); flavonoids, found both in black and green tea, can reduce inflammation, thus improving cardiovascular and bone health (4, 5); polyphenols from green, white and black tea also improve gastrointestinal digestion (6).

 

Not only do teas have a significant effect on the improvement of our physical health, they also have psychological benefits: on the one hand, they contribute to reducing anxiety, relieving stress and inducing a meditative and calming state; on the other hand, caffeine-containing teas or energy drinks are the go-to beverages when we need increased focus and attention. In addition, tea drinking may potentially also delay cognitive decline, thus preventing Alzheimer’s disease (7).

 

However, an important mention regarding the consumption of teas is that, as these various compounds have multiple health benefits, they may also have detrimental effects for certain groups of consumers. That is why it is important to consult with your physician regarding major changes in your diet or routines: for example, green tea is a major source of vitamin K, that can antagonize the effects of anticoagulant medication, in patients suffering from hypercoagulation, while a number of other cardiovascular drugs ( rosuvastatin, sildenafil, tacrolimus, simvastatin, nadolol and warfarin) may have their activity reduced or their toxicity increased, when co-administered with various teas (8).

 

In conclusion, the health benefits of drinking tea cannot be denied, given the millennia that this herbaceous drink has been utilized and the growing body of research in the last decades on the exact mechanisms by which tea influences our health. Although many factors influence the apparition and development of a diseases, it is safe to say that tea is a natural resource for promoting human health.

 

1.         J. V. Higdon, B. Frei, Tea catechins and polyphenols: health effects, metabolism, and antioxidant functions. Crit Rev Food Sci Nutr 43, 89-143 (2003).

2.         M. Pervin et al., Beneficial Effects of Green Tea Catechins on Neurodegenerative Diseases. Molecules 23 (2018).

3.         W. C. Reygaert, Green Tea Catechins: Their Use in Treating and Preventing Infectious Diseases. Biomed Res Int 2018, 9105261 (2018).

4.         C. L. Shen, M. C. Chyu, Tea flavonoids for bone health: from animals to humans. J Investig Med 64, 1151-1157 (2016).

5.         J. M. Hodgson, Tea flavonoids and cardiovascular disease. Asia Pac J Clin Nutr 17 Suppl 1, 288-290 (2008).

6.         G. Annunziata et al., Colon Bioaccessibility and Antioxidant Activity of White, Green and Black Tea Polyphenols Extract after In Vitro Simulated Gastrointestinal Digestion. Nutrients 10 (2018).

7.         C. A. Polito et al., Association of Tea Consumption with Risk of Alzheimer's Disease and Anti-Beta-Amyloid Effects of Tea. Nutrients 10 (2018).

8.         J. P. Werba et al., Update of green tea interactions with cardiovascular drugs and putative mechanisms. J Food Drug Anal 26, S72-s77 (2018).

 

Cooking with Herbs and Spices

07/10/2020
by Ankush Mahajan

Herbs are, by definition, the leaf part of plants used in cooking, in order to add flavor to a large variety of meals, sweet or savory. Their usefulness has traveled through time, being used as medicinal cures and as preservatives, apart from their culinary use, that is, to add taste and savor to food. To enhance the flavor palate of a dish, fresh herbs are added in the last minutes of cooking.


Spices, on the other hand, represent any other part of plants that can be used for cooking. They are usually dried before use. And, as with any powerful ingredient, adding too little will not affect the taste of a dish, whereas too many spices can overpower the other ingredients and throw the dish off balance. This is where the art of cooking with spices and herbs begins!

 

Herbs are quite easy to grow, even if you don’t have the luxury of a home garden; a bucket or a window-box will do just fine to ensure a continuous supply of tastiness to your meals. Even though fresh herbs are the best, oftentimes you may need to preserve them for later use:


-       if the herb is woody, quite tough, like rosemary or thyme, the easiest way to preserve them is to tie them up in bundles and dry them upside down, hanging in a dry warm place (do not shake them too much after they are dry, as the leaves will fall off easily);

-       softer herbs (basil, coriander, parsley) are best preserved in the freezer. After picking and washing the leaves, they should be finely chopped and dried on a towel. Finally, the softer herbs should be stored in vacuumed freezer bags; they last for several months and can be used directly from the freezer.

-       herbal oils are an excellent homemade present, easy to prepare and extremely flavorsome. In an extra-virgin olive oil bottle, simply add the fresh herbs.

-       herbal salts are also easy to prepare: dehydrate the herbs at low heat in the oven, on a baking tray, and crush them into your cooking salt.

 

Raw in salads or cooked in your meals, herbs and spices will definitely bring excitement and a depth of flavor to your dish: stew or sauce, salad dressing or vinnaigrette, soup, broth or marinade, even desserts and drinks. They may not even need to be added during the cooking itself; simply adding fresh leaves on the serving plate can enhance the smell and the appeal of the dish (pizza or pasta).  

 

When cooking with herbs, remember that whole herbs, with leaves attached to the stalk, are more flavored than leaves alone and that dry herbs are much more flavored than fresh herbs. However, long-term storage of dried herbs is not recommended: avoid consuming them after 12 months. Woody herbs, such as rosemary or thyme, are quite sturdy and can be added at the beginning of your cooking; they will not lose their flavor. Also, some herbs are only used to enhance the flavor of a dish, but they must not be eaten (e.g. bay leaves).

 

In order to become a regular herbal user, you can prepare a “bouquet garni” following the traditional French mix (parsley, thyme, bay leaf) or you can prepare your own mix; tie the herbs with string and keep them in cotton bags. Add them to your cooking, but remove before serving. Traditional herb combinations are listed below, for your inspiration:


o   basil, oregano, garlic

o   bay leaf, parsley, thyme, oregano

o   chilli, garlic, ginger, lemongrass

o   dill, chives, parsley, tarragon

o   sage, rosemary

 

Feel free to unleash your creativity, as new ingredients from previously unknown markets become more and more popular. Asian foods (Vietnamese, Chinese, Japanese, Malaysian, Indian etc) have been gaining traction in the Western cuisine and the combinations are unlimited, while also the enjoying the health benefits of these herbs.

Growing herbs in your kitchen

07/10/2020
by Admin Doe

An indoor garden, grown and nurtured in the comfort of your cozy home, can bring joy to you and your dears ones, not only by filling your home with a lovely greenery and a collection of aromas, but also by flavoring or garnishing your dishes with freshly clipped herbs.

Here are our tips for you, who are looking to be more adventurous with your culinary choices, to grow and maintain an indoor garden. Basic necessities are sun and a windowsill.

 

1.     If you are an absolute beginner, picking the right herbs may be the crucial step: look for soft herbs that can thrive with or can easily recover from under- or over-watering. You may consider chives, mint, sage, oregano, parsley, thyme or even chilies.

2.     One way to plant the herbs is from seeds, for the adventurous ones, and then you should consider beginning your garden in the spring. However, a beginner home gardener can also opt for starting with young plants, from a gardening store or even the supermarket pots. You can also use cuttings, basically branches cut out from the nodes and soaked in water until new roots start to appear.

3.     When it comes to the pots for home gardening, the options are countless: egg cartons, yoghurt cups, tin cans or mason jars. We do recommend using pots with drainage and a collection plate, but you can make your own by punching some holes in the egg cartons, for example. If you plan to use mason jars, you may want to add a layer of clay pebbles at the bottom, to collect the humidity from the pot.

4.     Repotting a plant can be quite stressful for the plant, so we recommend using large enough pots from the beginning.

5.     Watering the first few days and weeks is a great opportunity for figuring out exactly how much water the herbs need, depending on the temperature or humidity. Every morning, you may want to check the weight of the pots (if they still retain water, they will be heavier) and, with time, you will know when the plants need watering. Although surprisingly, herbs seem to need relatively little amounts of water for thriving.

6.     Sun is a must for home gardening. A minimum of 6h sun exposure per day is recommended for home-grown culinary herbs, which may be supplemented with a grow light, in parts of the world where the sun is scarce during the cold seasons. Basil, for instance, requires a lot of sun, so make sure to have a sunny spot for it, wherever you find yourself on the globe.

7.     When the time comes to harvest the results of your work, try not to cut out more than a quarter of the plant’s crown; this will stimulate further growth, while at the same time preventing the plant from withering.

8.     And lastly, when your herbs overgrow the pot they are in or when roots start sprouting from drainage holes, it is time to move the herb outdoors. They can stay outside until the cold season begins, or even throughout the cold, provided you can have a cutting from it, on order to regrow the herb the following season.

Good luck gardening! And let us know if you need further assistance with your home garden. We are here to help!


To buy cooking herbs and Tea online, please visit: https://theseasoningpantry.com