Spice Up Your Cooking

What’s one of the easiest ways to impress with your cooking? Fresh spices!

Spices, like many other foods will lose their freshness, flavor, texture and scent when a greater amount of their surface area is exposed to air. When you consider an apple, it will stay fresh, juicy and crisp for many days when left intact. Once the apple is sliced, the exposed outsides of the apple slice will begin to brown, while the inside the apple slice will remain fresh. Take that one step further and turn that apple into a puree, and the entirety of the apple will turn brown almost instantly.

This happens because of the amount of surface area of the apple exposed to air. Spices respond the same way, just over a much slower time period, but all the same the longer a spice is left ground into a power, the entirety of its surface area exposed to air, it will continue to lose its delightful aroma and flavor.

If you want to kick up your cooking skills and the flavor of your dishes, here are few tips for you to follow.

  1. Purchase and store your spices whole and intact, grind them on demand for your recipes. You will immensely improve the flavor of any dish you are cooking.
  2. When grinding your spices, use a mortal and pestle. With a bit of elbow grease, you can grind your spices down into a fine powder by turning your arm in a circular motion. You will need a bit of strength and speed to get the desired powder.
  3. Try to feel in your hand through the pestle the spices breaking down, and enjoy the intense aroma you will experience as the spices break down.
  4. You may want to use a small brush to get all of your powdered spices out of your mortar and into your ingredients.

Taking the time to implement these 4 steps will greatly improve the quality of any dish you are making, whether it’s the cinnamon in your morning waffles, or the thyme and oregano in your pasta sauce.

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