Herbs boost the flavour of any dish, allowing you to use less oil and salt, but also have a slew of nutritional benefits. CSL has selected four of our faves that will transform your cooking.
Herbs add a bright note to savoury or sweet dishes. Add them at the end of cooking (when the heat is turned off) so they retain maximum flavour. Our favourite new way to use them – coarsely chop or tear a variety and use them like salad greens. Only wash when you are ready to use them as water quickly spoils the leaves. If your herbs are wilting, revive them by plunging in ice water.
1 MINT Spearmint is a cocktail staple (think juleps and mojitos) and works well fresh, but when you want to pack a punch turn to peppermint for pungency. Just a sprig will revitalize canned and preserved food, or, grind into a pesto and add to soup.
2 CILANTRO Love it or hate it, cilantro is one of the most widely used herbs in the world. With citrusy notes, it works well freshly sprinkled in salsa, tacos, rice pilaf, and Asian noodle broths. To tame the flavour, cut it finely and add it a few minutes before dishes have completed cooking.
3 DILL Associated with Baltic and Scandinavian cuisines, it has a subtle anise undertone. When combined with yogurt, it lends a rounded, almost sweet flavour. If you’ve got a glut of dill, dry the fronds in a low oven to dehydrate and use the stems and stalks fresh.
4 PARSLEY More than just a garnish to a restaurant plate, this beauty is rich in Vitamin K, essential for clotting of blood and Vitamin C which helps repair bones. While the curly variety is stronger in flavour, widely used in Lebanese cuisine, flat leaf is milder and lends itself to Mediterranean flavours it is an excellent friend to tomatoes, lemon, garlic and olive oil.
This original culinary article first appeared in the Fall 2019 issue of City Style and Living Magazine.