Culinary Herbs and Their Uses

Culinary Herbs and Their Uses

Culinary herbs have been used in many cultures for thousands of years. It’s clear these culinary or cooking herbs have many uses, and the medicinal group of culinary herbs is particularly prized for their health-giving qualities. Around the world, each culture has its own unique methods of using these herbs in its cooking.

There are herbs that have healing properties such as oregano and basil. These are often used as a garnish on food preparation. These herbs can also be eaten raw or added to the food they are garnished on. Oregano is great for seasoning foods as well.

Spicy herbs are great additions to a dish. They can be combined with herbs to create a delicious blend. Cayenne pepper is an example of a favorite of many chefs and home cooks. Garlic is a delicious spice mixture used in most recipes. It is also very nutritious. The skin of a clove of garlic can be peeled and then added to your meals.

garlic cloves
Garlic is probably the most popular culinary herb by far.

There are other types of culinary herbs that are used more as a garnish. Lemon juice with thyme can be added to just about any dish to help enhance the taste and flavor. Other herbs that are used in cooking can also be used to garnish. Sage, parsley and dill are some of the most common herbs that can be used in a garnish.

While these herbs have long been used in cooking, they are now often referred to as the herbs of the present. We now know that they can be used in a wide variety of dishes from salads, to soups, to appetizers and much more. These culinary herbs have also been used in a wide range of medicinal applications.

There are also several different herbs that have medicinal uses. For example, rosemary has a long history of use as a treatment for respiratory problems. It is also useful for various digestive disorders. Rosemary is sometimes mixed with other ingredients to make a tea that can relieve the pain of arthritis.

The culinary herbs that is listed above are the most common cooking herbs. There are hundreds of other herbs that can be used as garnish  or ingredients with your meals. You may want to research some of the more obscure herbs for your recipes. A good example might be lemongrass, which is widely used in tropical Asia, but not so much in the West.

In addition to being great tasting and delicious, these herbs can also make a great gift for someone else. Just take a look at the options and you will soon realize just how versatile these herbs can be for a variety of different uses.

Another wonderful thing about these herbs is the fact that you can cook with them without any problem. The flavorings you use with these culinary herbs don’t react with anything that is put in front of them. This is a big plus over the traditional cooking methods. You can find different herbs from which you can use for many different recipes, whether it be an appetizer or a main course.

oregano herb
Oregano herb has a strong aroma and a slightly pungent taste.

These culinary herbs are often very easy to grow in an outdoor herb garden or simply on a sunny kitchen window sill. By growing them, you will always have fresh and dried herbs on hand when you grow them yourself with these tips.

  • Rosemary needs a location that receives at least 6-hours of direct sunlight each day, along with consistent moisture and regular feedings. When growing rosemary indoors, keep the plant away from drafts and don’t allow the plant leaves to touch the window pane. Plants will reach a mature size of 4-feet tall but can be kept pruned to a smaller size if desired.
  • Oregano grows best in full sun and well-draining soil. Plant oregano seeds in a 10-inch container (or 10-inches away from other outdoor plants) and allow soil to dry out between watering.
cayenne pepper
Cayenne pepper is part of the chili pepper family and has a moderately spicy flavor.
  • Cayenne peppers love hot weather and dry soil. Plant in full sun and well-draining soil. Harvest the red Cayenne and spread them out in a single layer in a warm, dry location to dry. When peppers have dried, pulse them in a blender until they reach the desired consistency to use for seasoning dishes.
  • Sage is an easy to grow herb that grows into an attractive, fragrant garden flower. This fragrant herb also attracts pollinators to your garden, like hummingbirds, while repelling several garden pests. Sage loves full sun and high humidity. Mist the plant daily when grown indoors, and plant near tomatoes, cabbage, and strawberries as a beneficial companion plant.
parsley herb
Parsley herb has a mild bitter taste and is widely used as garnishing.
  • Parsley is one of those rare garden plants that does not prefer direct sunlight. Dappled sunlight peeking through taller garden plants is a perfect environment for this herb. When growing indoors, place the pot in an east-facing window so the plant will only receive the morning sunlight.
  • Dill is an easy-to-grow annual herb that can be used to flavor recipes or to add fragrance to a flower garden. The attractive fronds and tiny yellow flowers make this herb plant a welcome addition to a fragrant garden even if you don’t want to grow it for culinary uses. Dill will re-seed itself and grows well in a sunny location. Adapts to most soil types.
dill herb
Dill imparts a “grassy” flavor to food and goes best with garlic.

Don’t forget about the kitchen tools. There are dozens and dozens of new tools that will allow you to add the flavor of these herbs to your cooking. In fact, you may have to use a pair of scissors and/or a sharp knife to be able to cut certain items into pieces for these recipes.

Another great way to incorporate these culinary herbs into your cooking is to make some recipes of your own. If you can find the right ones, you may have something special on the table each night. It isn’t always necessary to have a recipe for them but you will get some great inspiration that way. You can easily find recipes that you like and have these cooked up in under fifteen minutes!  Even the ingredients will be fresh. It is a great way to have something on hand when you need a dish that is quick and easy to make.

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