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Herbs and Spices. Objective: Gain some familiarity with the cultivation, preservation, and use of various herbs and spices with emphasis on herbs. Herb or Spice?. Herb Green leaf or ___________________ stem of a flowering plant used fresh or dried for flavor, scent, or medicinal properties

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herbs and spices

Herbs and Spices

Objective: Gain some familiarity with the cultivation, preservation, and use of various herbs and spices with emphasis on herbs

herb or spice
Herb or Spice?
  • Herb
    • Green leaf or ___________________ stem of a flowering plant used fresh or dried for flavor, scent, or medicinal properties
    • Grown in _____________________ climates
    • Generally more subtle in flavor
  • Spice
    • Roots, seeds, fruits, flowers, or bark used for similar purposes; usually earthy in color
    • Grown in the ____________________ Generally more pungent
  • Some plants can be both: cilantro/coriander, anise
uses of herbs spices
Uses of Herbs & Spices
  • The volatile oils contained in herbs and spices have many useful properties
    • Preservation
      • Allows a _______________________ shelf life for food in lieu of refrigeration due to antibacterial properties or can mask taste of spoilage.
    • Flavor and Aroma
      • Adds a pleasant smell to substances like incense, perfumes, tinctures, and cosmetics.
    • Ceremony
      • Herbs and spices are used in _____________________ events such as embalming, cremation, marriage, and religious celebrations.
    • Medicine
      • Health benefits derived from _______________________ beliefs and scientific facts
cultivating herbs
Cultivating Herbs
  • Require moderate supplies of fertility and organic matter
  • Good _____________________ and air exchange essential
    • Prevent spread of disease
    • Raised beds improve drainage
  • Most herbs easily started from seed
  • Exceptions that should be propagated vegetatively:
    • Annuals: rosemary, thyme, and mint
    • Perennials: French tarragon (_________________ not viable)
  • Limited pest problems
    • ________________________ and flavors often have evolved as pest deterrents
harvesting herbs
Harvesting Herbs
  • Can remove leaves carefully throughout growing season. _______________________ can damage plant, but ____________________harvesting will promote vigorous foliage growth
    • Remove flowers to keep herbs growing vegetatively
  • Collect just after the dew dries in the morning
  • Herbs will have most flavor just before the plant __________________
  • ___________________ perennials will have to be taken indoors to survive an Illinois winter
cooking with herbs
Cooking with Herbs
  • Fine vs. Robust Herbs
    • _________________ herbs are added to food while it is being cooked
    • ____________________ herbs may be eaten uncooked, in salads, or sprinkled over other dishes
    • Some can be used both ways (i.e. parsley)
  • Fresh herbs preferable to ______________________ ones
    • Drying will cause loss of some essential oils and flavors, even under ideal conditions
  • Ethnic herb assortments:
    • Italian: basil, oregano, fennel, flat-leaf parsley, garlic
    • Mexican: cilantro/coriander, basil, chile peppers, tomatillo
cooking with herbs7
Cooking with Herbs
  • Place herbs/spices in oil and allow flavor to infuse into the oil and use for cooking
  • Make marinades and sauces for meat, poultry, or fish
    • Rosemary with lamb
  • Make herb butter, cheese, or stuffing
cooking with herbs8
Cooking with herbs
  • Wide variety of herbal teas
    • Some contain cancer-fighting antioxidants
  • Use as ________________
  • Eat fresh
    • Basil over fresh mozzarella and tomato in bruschetta
storing herbs
Storing Herbs
  • _____________________________________ herbs only if necessary; may remove some flavor
  • Exposure to air and light will cause loss of flavor and aroma
    • Can last 1-2 years under ideal conditions
  • Store _________________________; pulverize just before use
  • Drying herbs:
    • Dry rapidly in a warm, dark room at temps below 100°F
    • Can place in bags with 1-2 inches of stem showing and tie loosely
    • Can place leaves on a tray and turn daily
    • Can even dry in microwave, but may cause damage
  • Freezing herbs:
    • Place herbs in labeled plastic bags; individually or in mixtures
    • Chop finely and freeze in ice cube trays,______________________ herbs and ____________________ water