I’m always getting asked how by people how they can their favourite dishes using tasty recipes that don’t use bottled sauces with all their additives, preservatives, and e-numbers isms.
This makes me excited for a couple of reasons. One is that more and more people are becoming aware of the dangers of these fake ingredients starting to check the labels on things they buy. Secondly because this is then creating an interest in people like you in how to create flavours through nature.
Herbs and spices are the answer people! Salt and pepper are so underused – I mean real salt – the Himalayan or mineral salt. It enhances flavours, don’t be afraid to use it! It’s just the processed table salt you want to stear clear of.
Herbs are brilliant. I use herbs in everything. Fresh from the garden is best. That is exactly how I roll as a chef – out of the garden and into the kitchen. I’ve written another post about the 6 herbs you should have in your garden. Growing your own means you can nurture them yourself, you get to use them fresh, and you save money – triple win!
Herbs are Mother Nature’s ingenious way to flavour up foods. Learning to use them in sauces and dressings is the quickest way to be a legend in the kitchen. The popularity of my Dressings and Sauces eBooks are testimony to that!
Below I’ve given you a few ideas on how you can make tasty recipes using herbs and spices. Get inspired, feel creative and have a go at home. It’s easier than you think.
Let’s start with something simple like scrambled eggs. I’m thinking to add either shallots, leeks, onions or spring onions—along with a little parsley. First, heat a bit of olive or coconut oil in the frying pan and pop in the fresh-cut spring onion. Sauté this with some salt and pepper to bring out the natural sugars in the onion. It’s simple things like this that make all the difference. Add a couple of beaten eggs, stir them a bit and then turn off the flame and let the residual heat finish the cooking. I’ve not added milk; the herbs are all that’s needed to flavour up the eggs. The result is salivatingly good.
Whenever I make a big, fresh Indian dahl, I start with onions, garlic, ginger, turmeric, mustard seeds, cumin all in a pan. And then I add my lentils, water, salt and pepper. I cook that together, and just before it’s ready, I chop up a WHOLE bunch of fresh coriander—roots and all—and throw it in. Finally, I put in chopped tomatoes and parsley. All those herbs just LIFT UP that dish.
To make a really tasty salad, I mean like really exciting, then definitely add herbs. Experiment here, try mint, parsley, coriander, basil, oregano … whatever calls you. Chop them all up and throw them into really bring everything to life. Even common mashed potatoes can get a lift with herbs. I actually never boil my potatoes by the way, I prefer to steam them. Then I mash them and fold in a chopped leek.
Herbs are my greatest gift as a chef, as they are for anyone transitioning from bottled sauces. So grow herbs and use herbs. Pull the plants out of your garden that don’t serve you, and plant some herbs that can.
I hope you feel inspired to create some tasty recipes and let me know how you go on my Chef Cynthia Louise Facebook page 🙂
Chef Cynthia Louise xx
Chef Cynthia Louise is an Internationally acclaimed MasterChef, speaker, author, restaurant consultant, teacher and television presenter in wholefood, dairy-free cooking. She also has the worlds first online cooking classes focused on dairy-free plant-based whole foods with recipes that people are raving about and changing people's health, one delicious bite at a time. Chef Cynthia loves nothing more than educating people about the simplicity and vitality of a plant-based, whole foods lifestyle. Each dish is like art on a plate and her flavour combinations nourish the soul and get everyone talking.