One of the hardest things for me to see is someone trying to eat a healthy diet, and they have trouble sticking to it because of the boring food. Healthy food does not have to be boring! And one thing that makes a huge difference is good seasoning. I’m not talking about a BBQ sauce full of sugar, or a creamy dressing full of I-don’t-know-what, I’m talking about natural spices and herbs that can totally transform your meals.
I take a trip every now and then to one of my favorite foodie stores, Penzeys (no they aren’t paying me.. although, that would be lovely). They have locations around the country and best of all, you can order online (sometimes they add free stuff to your order). While it is nice to be able to walk in and smell what you want to purchase, sometimes depending on location, that just isn’t an option. So I am going to help out as much as I can and post about some of my favorite mixes that you can’t find elsewhere.
I always use this mix when I make salmon. It is really perfect for a lot of veggies such as zucchini, eggplant, bell peppers, or a mix of veggies on the BBQ. You can use it to change up the flavor of your chicken, fish, or even on your breakfast eggs. Salt, shallots, chives, garlic, onion, green peppercorns.
This one is similar to Fox Point, and I sometimes use both at the same time (on my salmon). Sunny Paris doesn’t have salt so I’m more likely to go heavy with this one or use it when I want to control the amount of salt in my meal. Sunny Paris tastes great on vegetables, salads, and any fish. Purple shallots, chives, green peppercorns, French basil, French tarragon, chervil, bay leaf, dill weed.
This is one of my absolute favorites especially for this time of year. Great on roasted potatoes, pork, beef, chicken, turkey, lamb, or in a stew, it really adds some warmth and German oomph to any meal. If you’ll be drinking beer, it will probably work with your food. Bavarian style crushed brown mustard, rosemary, garlic, thyme, bay leaves, sage.
I always add this to my chili (which has been entered in competitions… it’s good, trust me) and sometimes I’ll add a sprinkle to a curried chicken if I want to spice things up a little. This would be perfect on beef, tacos, beans, and vegetables. Ground ancho, onion, garlic, paprika, citric acid, lemon peel, chipotle pepper, red pepper, jalapeño, cocoa, natural smoke flavoring.
Herbes de Provence
My mom made chicken breasts last week with this mix and some salt (that’s all) and it was so good! This one is perfect for chicken, stews, anything you want to roast, pork tenderloin, and soups. Rosemary, cracked fennel, thyme, savory, basil, French tarragon, dill weed, Turkish oregano, lavender, chervil, marjoram.
This is a must for chili. I am obsessed and use a ridiculous amount of it, but every person that has tried my chili wants the recipe and is upset when they can’t replicate it without Chili 9000. You can use it for fajitas, tacos, vegetables, and when you want your fish with a kick. Ancho chili pepper, cumin, garlic, cilantro, onion, paprika, cayenne pepper, lemon peel, Mexican oregano, black pepper, cocoa powder, citric acid, turmeric, cinnamon, coriander, ginger, natural smoke flavoring, fenugreek, cloves, fennel, nutmeg, white pepper, anise seed, jalapeño pepper, star anise, cardamom.
Roasted Garlic (very different from the regular Garlic Powder, so having both doesn’t hurt)
Hungarian-Style Sweet Paprika
Jerk (chicken seasoning)
You can find your closest location or shop online at www.penzeys.com