Last week a few herbs and spices were reviewed in this blog post
. There are so many to discuss, it is hard to pick a few. Knowing that each have benefits, reading up on each one can be helpful to understand where certain ones may be of interest to you personally. Regardless, the general benefits of herbs and spices are helpful to most people. In food quantities, these nutrients can be helpful, but awareness of the “too much of a good thing” needs to be applied here as herbs and spices do have some medicinal qualities so amounts need to be respected especially when pregnant, breastfeeding or dealing with significant health issues like blood clotting and immune system disorders.
I want to touch on turmeric and cumin along with garlic and onions this week. Garlic is very noteworthy but is a bit of an odd ball as it is not an herb, it is more of a veggie along with onions (allium family). Even though they are in the veggie family, due to their flavour characteristics and benefits, I am mentioning them here. They deserve special mention as they are extremely helpful foods that are very easy to add to pretty much any dish and add huge benefits to our health. Benefits include anti-inflammatory, anti-bacterial, anti-viral and the sulphur component has been studied for anti-cancer activity as well as lower cholesterol and blood pressure for cardio vascular protection.
Simple meal idea - You can make a lovely quick meal by pulling out leftovers from your fridge and using garlic and onions as your starting point (saute these first for a few minutes to get onions to caramelize). Add any left over veggies and/or add fresh chopped cabbage, carrots, etc. Toss in cooked meat and rice or quinoa, etc. Add some coconut milk, grate some turmeric root and/or add some curry spice for amazing flavour. Heat and mix all together and you have a lovely dish with very little effort but full of great nutrients and tastes amazing. We love left overs for this simple reason, ease of a quick and yummy meal full of healthy benefits.
More details on turmeric and curry as these questions seem to come up often… Turmeric is a root, like ginger, that has incredible qualities for health - there is much research on it - check it out. Curcumin is an active compound in turmeric. As with most foods, the unprocessed raw form of turmeric is most potent, but dried and ground turmeric spice is helpful as well.
Curry is a spice blend that has many variations - but pretty much always includes turmeric and cumin as well as cinnamon, coriander, chillies, cardamon nutmeg, cloves, etc.
Give these amazing spices a try! Use Google to find simple recipes with high reviews to increase your use of herbs and spices and you will be freestyling it in no time. There are also a few great recipes to try listed below. Enjoy!
Recipes to Try