Taco meat is a relatively simple dish and may seem foolproof, but there are ways that you can ruin it. The seasonings you use play a crucial role. If you want an authentic and balanced flavor profile, you will need the right ingredients. Here are some suggestions for the best spices and herbs to use in your taco meat.
Sumac is associated mainly with Middle Eastern cooking, though there is a North American variant of the spice. Its primary function is to add a tart note to foods. The flavor of sumac is similar to lemon and other citrus fruits though some also liken its flavor to that of fresh apples. Along with the flavor, sumac gives your dishes a bright red color. Of course, it is possible to misuse this potent spice if you are unfamiliar with it. Use the following sumac dos and don’ts as a guide to using the spice appropriately.
Bay leaves infuse dishes with a woodsy flavor that also has subtle notes of eucalyptus and clove. Its flavor profile is bold but nuanced in a way that is difficult to replicate with any other herb or combination of herbs. Despite the fact that it is not as blatantly aggressive as some other seasonings, the bay leaf can make or destroy a dish depending on how well you use it. Follow these tips to use this herb effectively.
Scrambled eggs are a true blank-slate food; it is one of those dishes that offers much more in terms of texture than flavor. This also means that you can use almost any spice, herb or combination of spices and herbs …
Potatoes are considered America’s favorite starch, a role that is due mainly to their versatility and ability to act as an all-purpose accompaniment to many different proteins. Mashed potatoes are one of the more popular options when it comes to potato-based sides. Unfortunately, mashed potatoes also have a reputation for blandness in some quarters. Another way to look at it is that they serve as a blank slate upon which a variety of seasonings can shine. If you want flavorful mashed potatoes, try one of the following herbs and spices below.
Za’atar is a Middle Eastern herb and spice blend with ingredients that can vary but that will usually contain thyme, oregano, and sesame seeds. It is versatile and can be used in a range of preparations; however, you will need to follow a few guidelines to get the best results. Read on below to learn how to get the most benefits from za’atar.
Herbes de Provence is a blend of herbs and (sometimes) spices that are used in the cuisine from Provence in France. Like most other herb or spice blends, the ingredients used vary so that there is no one flavor profile; instead, its taste depends on the maker’s preferences. Despite the variability, cooks usually choose from the same set of ingredients so that there is some consistency in the flavor profile. You will find that — as with any classic, complex blend — there are rules to how you use it. You follow these rules if you want to get the most from the blend. Here are some of the rules for using herbes de Provence.
Chicory is an herb related to endive and radicchio. You can use the tops as salad vegetables or you can saute them; you can prepare the roots and use them as an additive for coffee. Chicory root is essential when making New Orleans style coffee, which may be made entirely with the root or using a blend of regular coffee and chicory. The greens are a popular ingredient for classical European cooking and are especially popular in France and England. This herb is versatile but can be tricky to use. When using chicory, follow the tips below for the best results.