Kitchen Basics- Starting Your Spice Rack

Spices and seasonings can make your meals so much more tasty, but it can be overwhelming to choose what and how much. Here are some basics, why we use them and a quick recipe.

Salt and Pepper – often underutilized and enhance most dishes. Keep them handy!

Cinnamon – key for many baking recipes, adds warm sweetness when using less sugar

Cumin – earthy and in a wide variety of cuisines, I use rounded measures of whatever the recipe calls for

Chili Powder – a blend of dried chilies, garlic powder, oregano, and cumin. Gives slight heat and complex flavor

Curry Powder – start with the mild version of this blend of spices, herbs and seeds. It’s used in recipes like traditional curries or baked goods

Cayenne Pepper – made from dried ground chilies and packs a punch so you usually only use it a pinch at a time

Oregano – native to the Mediterranean region, gives an earthy, green flavor to many cuisines

Smoked Paprika – Chris’s Favorite, it is not spicy but add smoky pepper flavor

Everything But The Bagel – Literally good on everything

Mrs. Dash – salt free goodness, the hardest part is choosing which one you want to try

 

***Pro-Tip : I toss the plastic guard so its quick and easy to use measuring spoons in the jar***

 

 

Better Hummus

1 (15 oz) can chickpeas

¼ cup fresh lemon juice (1 large lemon)

¼ cup well stirred tahini

1 clove garlic, minced

2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil, plus more for serving

½ tsp cumin

½ tsp salt

2-3 Tbsp water

Everything Seasoning to taste

 

Process tahini and lemon in a food processor for 1 minute. Scrape sides and bottom and process 30 seconds more. *This extra time helps whip the tahini making the hummus smooth and creamy*. Add the olive oil, minced garlic, cumin and ½ tsp salt. Process for 30 seconds, scrape the sides and bottom and process 30 seconds more or until well blended. Open, drain and rinse the chickpeas. Add half to the food processor and blend 1 minute. Scrape sides and bottom, then add remaining chickpeas and process until thick and smooth- 1-2 minutes. Most likely the hummus will be too thick or still have tiny bits of chickpea at this point. Turn the processor on and slowly add 2-3 Tbsp water until you have reached the perfect consistency. Serve as is, or sprinkle with Everything seasoning and a drizzle of olive oil. Store in an airtight container and refrigerate up to 1 week.

 

Drop your favorite spice to use below!

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