The distinction between herbs and spices is that herbs refers to the leafy green parts of a plant, and spices refers to other parts of the plant such as seeds, berries, bark, root, fruit and sometimes dried leaves. They add wonderful flavors to foods and make them interesting.
These sections will spotlight different herbs and spices… we will update these sections regularly… so check back often as these sections will change… but have no fear… when we remove a section here.. we will post it during the night so it will appear in the blog and, therefore, you will be able to find it in the archives and under the label “Herbs and Spices”. We hope you will find this information useful.
The Herb Garden
Just a general note I thought may be helpful to post here again....
When substituting dried herbs for fresh ones in a recipe… a general rule of thumb is 1 teaspoon dried for 1 tablespoon fresh (which is a 3 to 1 ratio)…
Featured Herb - Chives
Chives are part of the onion family and are native to Europe, Asia and North America. They appear as thin green straws and impart a wonderfully light onion flavor. They are commonly used in cooking and are one of the “fines herbes” in French cooking, along with tarragon, chervil and parsley.
They are used in many traditional French and Swedish dishes. Chives are in many recipes for fish, potatoes and soups, as well as, other foods. They're frequently used also as a garnish.
Chives readily available in groceries in both the fresh and dried form. I consider it to be one my “must have” herbs for cooking and I prefer the fresh variety to the dried. I snip them with kitchen shears over many dishes.
The Busy Bowl in the picture is part of a set of 4 bowls by RECO International and is available at romertopfonline.com and other fine stores.
Featured Spice - Paprika
Paprika is a spice made from the grinding of many dried sweet red or green bell peppers. The flavors vary widely from country to country, for example Hungarian paprika is either spicy or sweet (see picture below).
Paprikas made in other countries, such as Spain, Portugal and Nicaragua, are not made exclusively from bell peppers, other varieties of peppers are used... See picture at top.
Paprika is used in rices, soups, stews and in the preparation of sausages.
MYTH:Food is safe once it's cooked, no matter how long you leave it out.
FACT: Food - raw food and cooked food - may not be safe after sitting out at room temperature for more than two hours.
Bacteria grow rapidly in the "danger zone" between 40° F and 140° F.
ADVICE: Follow the "two hour rule": toss perishable foods left out for more than 2 hours.
And if left out in a room or outdoors where the temperature is 90° F or hotter, food should be discarded after just 1 hour.
Source: Partnership for Food Safety Education
Safe Cooking Temperatures
Food is safely cooked when it reaches a high enough internal temperature to kill the harmful bacteria that causes illness. So by cooking food to these proper temperatures you can prevent illness caused by bacteria in food.
Measure the internal temperature using a food thermometer... see my previous post about the various food thermometers available.
Are you a new cook or are you looking for a perfect gift for one? I have a suggestion. The Joy of Cooking. It is by far the best starter cookbook I have ever seen. The Best Man at my wedding gave it to me. I already knew how to cook, but this book covered the basics and answered so many questions over the years. If I was unsure of an ingredient in a recipe, I could look it up and find a wealth of information about it. From cuts of meat, information about all types of fruits and vegetables, how to make gravy, to the many types of salad greens, it gives not only information about the food but also provides valuable tips for cooking and storage. It's invaluable in any kitchen.
Sunday Morning Breakfast Ideas
Sunday morning breakfasts at our house are special. I like to make something different from the ordinary routine.
If it’s pancakes or waffles… I make them different in some way… instead of serving them with just pancake syrup …. I make them with strawberries and a homemade whipped cream on top….
I published a recipe around the holidays called Bananas Foster Waffles…yummmm… how about Peach Melba waffles?… serve waffles with canned or fresh peaches on them …drizzle a little raspberry syrup and put a dollop of ice cream on top…. they are to die for!
Crepes are another Sunday morning breakfast we like…. Crepes can be filled with virtually anything …. From savory to sweet… it’s all good.
Eggs …. Poached… scrambled…omelets… frittatas …fried with grits… you name it… you can do it!
And we can’t forget to include French toast… my Aloha Stuffed French toast is such a treat and very easy.
Warm muffins and fresh fruit… with mini fritattas….also great …. check out the Muffin and Eggs label for a list of wonderful recipes.
Sweet rolls and pastries…. delicious coffeecakes…. and more.
There are many ways you can truly make a Sunday morning breakfast special.
I could go on and on…. And I will!
I’ll do it until I run out of ideas…. So whether you cook a romantic breakfast for two or for a crowd ….put us on your favorites and come back often!
To see a complete listing of wonderful breakfast recipes you can peruse the Breakfast and Brunch label or go to our Recipe and Tip Index and see a listing there.
Some Product Reviews You May be Interested In
Check out these products....
Vacu Vin Jar Opener
This great gadget by Vacu Vin is a must have in any kitchen... makes opening vacuum sealed jars easy... check out my product review post for more information.
Product Review: Country Bob's All-Purpose Sauce
Country Bob's All-Purpose Sauce is a terrific addition to many foods... especially steaks, burgers, chicken, fries and barbecue. You must try it!
Product Review: Harry and David's Pepper and Onion Relish
Harry and David's Pepper and Onion Relish - Classic Recipe is a real winner. Poured over a softened brick of cream cheese and served with crackers, it makes a quick and easy hors d'oeuvre...a definte crowd pleaser.
If you are looking for more recipes click the "Older Posts" link to page back to older posts or go to the archives in the right column. The list of labels in the left column will help you find specific types of recipes or try our search engine at the top and search by name or ingredient.
While almost all of the photos here are produced by us, occasionally we do use second party sources for stock photos if, at the time of post, a picture of our own is unavailable. We choose photos that are a true representation of the food or subject discussed. This is particularly true of some of our Tips and Commentaries. All artwork/photos are credited to the producer if known. Many of these photos are obtained through photo sharing sites and the artists are unknown. If you are the artist/producer of any works on this site, feel free to email me at firstname.lastname@example.org and credit will be given.
Copyright 2008-2012 by Linda M. Hendricks/Cooking Tip of the Day. All rights reserved. No part of this blog, including photographs/writings can be reproduced, copied or disseminated without the express written permission from Linda M. Hendricks.