Cooking with fresh herbs is a surefire way to add flavor and aroma to your dishes. Fresh herbs are commonly used in various cuisines to enhance the flavor and aroma of food. But cooking with herbs can be a bit daunting, especially if you are not familiar with them. Here are some tips and tricks to help you cook with fresh herbs like a pro.
- Know Your Herbs
Before you start cooking with fresh herbs, it is essential to understand their taste, fragrance, texture, and most importantly, which herbs complement each other. Herbs like basil, oregano, rosemary, thyme, and dill are commonly used in various dishes around the world, and they all have different fragrances and flavors.
- Store and Handle Them Properly
Fresh herbs are delicate and require careful handling to retain their freshness and flavor. You can store your fresh herbs in your fridge’s crisper drawer, wrapped in damp paper towels. Alternatively, you can also store them upright in a jar of water, just like cut flowers.
- Use the Right Amount
One of the common mistakes in cooking with herbs is using too much or too little. When it comes to herbs, less is more. Use the right amount of herbs to avoid overpowering the dish’s flavor. A general rule of thumb is to use one tablespoon of fresh herbs to every one-and-a-half teaspoons of dried herbs.
- Add Herbs at the Right Time
When cooking with herbs, it is essential to add them at the right time to bring out the maximum flavor. Delicate herbs like basil and parsley should be added towards the end of cooking to preserve their freshness and flavor. Robust herbs like thyme and rosemary can be added earlier in the cooking process as they take longer to release their flavors.
- Pair with the Right Ingredients
Pairing herbs with the right ingredients can elevate your dish’s flavor to new heights. For instance, basil pairs well with tomatoes, while rosemary complements poultry dishes perfectly. Understanding the proper pairing of herbs and ingredients is crucial to cooking delicious meals.
- Experiment with Different Combinations
Cooking with herbs is a fun and creative process. Don’t be afraid to experiment with different combinations of herbs to find your unique flavor profile. All herbs have different flavors, and combining them can create entirely new flavor profiles.
- Use Fresh Herbs in Dressings and Sauces
Fresh herbs are great for making dressings, marinades,