Same recipe cooked by different people tastes different. Cooking is a skill, an art which one can learn by experimenting and using different spices and herbs. There is a whole range of spices to choose from but one has to know these spices and their correct usage.
Spices add flavor, colour and taste to a dish. One has to understand the right ways to use these spices. Always use herbs and spices discretely, more does not mean more taste, it can spoil the taste of the food.
Ways to add spices to Food for maximum flavor:
- Use spices and herbs to improve the natural aroma of the food, do not mask the flavor.
- Crush dry herbs just before adding these to the food. This gives a better flavor. Fresh herbs must be added at the end of the cooking for maximum aroma.
- Do not use two strong flavoured herbs together. Always use one strong flavoured and one herb or spice with mild flavor.
- While removing spices or herbs from the container use a dry spoon.
- To get a blended flavor add herbs at the beginning of the cooking. But if you want a distinctive flavor then add herbs at the end of cooking.
- Whole spices are best to use in dishes that take long to cook as these discharge the flavor slowly.
- Ground herbs and spices give out flavor very easily and fast. In dishes that take long to cook like curries and stew, add ground spices towards the end of the cooking.
- Foods that are not cooked or cold dishes like salads, fruits and juices, add spices and herbs many hours before the food is served to allow the flavous to blend well with the food.
- While following a recipe, if you increase the quantity two times do not use double the amount of spices, add only 50% more.
All spices do not serve the same purpose. Ginger and garlic enhance the taste of the food, makes it taste rich, the food tastes spicy with chilli powder and with amchur powder (dry mango powder) the food tastes sour.
Foods and Spices
- Black Pepper powder – For a more peppery taste grind the pepper fresh before adding to the dish. Long cooking reduces the flavor and taste of powder pepper, so add powder pepper towards the end of cooking.
- Ginger – For baking ginger powder can be used but for curries and dishes use fresh ginger for maximum benefits.
- Saffron – The threads of saffron should be soaked before adding to a dish towards the end of the cooking.
- Coriander leaves – To retain the maximum flavor of these leaves add them to the dish at the very end of the cooking and just stir them into the dish.
- Whole spices – Whole spices like cinnamon, cloves and whole pepper corns can be added to a dish when liquid is added to it.
Different spices serve different purpose, flavor and taste to different foods. You need to experiment with various combinations of spices and herbs to get your perfect dish. So go ahead add some mew herbs and spices to your dinner and see the difference.