I am obsessed with flavor. And by flavor I mean poignant, memorable, recognizable aromas and tastes. I don’t know why, but everything I make has to “sing,” as an editor of mine always says.
I’ve noticed that there are a few things in my spice cabinet that get pulled out a lot. And it’s those spices that I use in different quantities with varying pairings to make all sorts of dishes.
First, there is my French Sea Salt. I bought it at Williams-Sonoma a few months ago and it’s from “the island of Ré, off France’s Atlantic coast,” according to the little blurb on WS’s website. Nice big chucks of salt add a great flavor to just about everything. I use it instead of table salt, almost on a daily basis. Sea salt is great in dishes like Roasted Red Pepper and Artichoke Crostini, Balsamic Tomato, Corn and Cucumber Panzanella and Balsamic Roasted Green Beans.
Secondly, there is my McCormick Barbecue Seasoning. It’s a powder form and virtually calorie free. But it tastes great. I love adding it to stir-fry or rice. But then, I am a barbecue junkie. I have no less than three varieties of the bottled version in my house at any given time.
Trader Joe’s Dried Basil is another favorite of mine. I use it mostly in sauces, but lately have found myself sprinkling it on meats and pastas too. I am thinking that I might create a little herb garden in my kitchen so I can use the fresh version more often, though. How hard could a little herb garden be to maintain?