Postdate: 21 July 2016
Herbs and spices have been used for centuries to give dishes more taste or to spice them up. In the kitchen, you cannot do without them and, especially with vegetables, they can be used to replace salt. They also contain antioxidants, an additional benefit for your health. You can use them dried or fresh, but fresh herbs you can buy or grow yourself are, of course, tastier.
Chilli pepper and nutmeg
Chilli is a product that is often used: it gives your meat or soup just that extra kick and makes it spicier. Besides that, chilli contains a substance called capsaicin which increases the metabolism. Nutmeg is popular all over the world and it gives a powerful flavour to dishes. It also appears to have a calming effect on the stomach. You can use nutmeg on vegetables such as cauliflower and asparagus.
Parsley and saffron
Parsley is a herb that is often used as a garnish. You can add it to soups or use it in a dressing or salad. Parsley contains a lot of iron: it is good for the digestion and the cardiovascular system. Saffron is a spice that gives a rich, warm taste and aroma to your dishes. You only need a tiny amount to experience the strong yet subtle taste. Studies indicate that this spice can have a positive effect on your mood and learning performances.
Rosemary and ginger
Rosemary is used in the kitchen, but also in cosmetics. The taste is described as powerful, aromatic, and a bit sweet. You can add it to savoury dishes (such as stews) or to a dressing. The herb is supposed to have a positive effect on your digestion and blood circulation. Ginger has a sharp taste that can be easily overpowering, so you only need a small amount. It can be used in a smoothie or with Asian dishes. It seems to relieve an upset stomach and painful muscles.
'Variety's the very spice of life; that gives it all its flavour'