Friday, June 19, 2015

Mix It Up!

Here are some of my favorite seasoning mixes -- I like making my own to avoid the additives, extra salt and sugar, and anti-caking ingredients the commercial mixes have.

Bonus, many spices have positive health effects.   Did you know these spices have and can. . .

Black pepper

May help lower blood glucose:
Bay leaf

May have antibacterial properties:
Lemon grass

So here's to your health, more money in your wallet, and good eating!

Poultry Seasoning

1 teaspoon each:  dried rosemary, sage, thyme, marjoram and celery salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
Pinch of nutmeg.

I usually double or even triple the ingredients to store in my spice jar.

Poultry Rub

1 teaspoon kosher salt or 1/2 teaspoon table salt
1 teaspoon black pepper
2 teaspoons smoked paprika
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon ground coriander (optional for me)
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1/4 teaspoon ground cayenne

Makes about 3 tablespoons, enough to season a 4 pound whole chicken or 8 bone-in or boneless chicken breasts.

Enchilada Sauce

15 ounce can tomato sauce
1 teaspoon cumin
1 teaspoon oregano
1 teaspoon chili powder (or a little less for less heat)
1/2 teaspoon salt
a few shakes of garlic, onion and chipotle powder

Simmer for 20-30 minutes.  Makes enough sauce for 9-10 enchiladas.

Cajun Seasoning

1 tablespoon paprika
1 teaspoon seasoned salt
1 teaspoon rubbed sage
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder

Great recipe - Coat 4 lean boneless center cut pork chops 1/2" thick on both sides.  Heat 2 teaspoons butter over high heat until it starts to brown.  Put chops in pan, reduce heat to medium.  Fry on both sides until dark brown, about 6-8 minutes.

Another Cajun Seasoning

2 teaspoons paprika
2 teaspoons black pepper
1 1/2 teaspoons garlic powder
1 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
1 teaspoon dried thyme
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 teaspoon onion powder
1/4 teaspoon dry mustard

Mediterranean Spice

1 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
1 teaspoon dried thyme
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon salt

Great recipe - 2 large sweet potatoes (~2 pounds) skins on, scrubbed and cut into 4" sticks each 1/2" thick, 3 large egg whites (a scant 1/2 cup.  Preheat oven to 450 with racks in upper and middle positions.  Line two baking sheets with parchment paper and rub with oil.  Put sweet potatoes in microwave safe container, cover and micro 2 minutes.  Stir gently, cover and micro 1-2 minutes more until pieces are pliable.  Let rest 5 minutes covered, pour onto platter.  In large bowl, whisk egg whites until frothy, add Mediterranean Spice and whisk to blend.  Toss the sweet potatoes in the seasoned egg whites and place on single layer on prepared baking sheets.  Bake 10 minutes, then flip over with a spatula.  Rotate sheets and bake another 15 minutes or until dark golden brown.  Serve immediately.

Grilled Vegetable Seasoning

Bonus it is salt-free, you'll never miss the salt!

1 teaspoon dried basil
1 teaspoon tarragon (optional for me)
1 teaspoon dried chives (optional for me)
1 teaspoon majoram
1 teaspoon dried parsley
1/2 teaspoon dried savory or rosemary
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme

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