The Top 5 Reasons You Should Only be Using Fresh Herbs When You Cook
- They Make your Food Taste Amazing
The word of thumb is that when substituting fresh herbs for dried you should use 3X’s the amount called for. We believe that it makes whatever dish you’re preparing 3X’s more flavorful as well! Let’s face it dried herbs are…well, not fresh. They are generally about 3-6 months old when you purchase them (maybe even older), yikes! Over that time period the flavor profile breaks down leaving only a shadow of the flavor it once had. Fresh herbs on the other hand are generally harvested within a week of you purchasing them in the store. This means that when you add fresh herbs to your dishes you are adding all of the brightness and depth of flavor that you expect. Who wants to serve their family and friends food with 3 X’s less flavor? Not us!
- Fresh Herbs Make Food Look More Delicious
Fresh herbs come in a wide range of colors from the soft sage green of Sage (ha) and the bright lemony greens of Chervil to the deep rich greens of Basil plus everything in between. Line them all up side by side and you will have as many color variations as you have flavors! Add all of this delicious color to your food and be confident that the vibrant colors they see is are the vibrant flavors they will get!
- Fresh Herbs Make Your Eating Experience More Enjoyable
As if eating delicious food could get better! Scientists at French biomedical and public health research organization Institut National de la Santé et de la Recherche Médicale (INSERM) recently published findings that could explain how hunger relates to smell. When hunger was induced in the participants of the study, scientists were able to spot specific receptors where the sense triggered the olfactory circuit. In short, the sense of smell triggers hunger (we didn’t need a scientific study to tell us that though, right?). We recently set up a Fresh Herb display at a food show and every single person who walked by commented on the wonderful aroma. Open a container of dried herbs and take sniff. Now, open a clamshell of Fresh Herbs and you will immediately notice the difference. Fragrance enhances flavor and Fresh Herbs pack a whollop of olfactory delight into every bite!
- Peace of Mind
Using fresh ingredients creates a sense of connection to what you are cooking. Knowing what is going into your food and where it came from creates peace of mind. I don’t know exactly where my jars of spices came from…china somewhere, maybe? But I do know where my fresh herbs were grown. We choose local ingredients as much as possible because it supports the local economy and the families living within them. When I am feeding my family and friends I want to be sure that what I am feeding them is fresh and that it is healthy. Buy Local!
- Last But Maybe Most Important, They are Really Good for You
Fresh herbs don’t just please your senses they are good for you too! Fresh herbs are filled with healthy helpers like anti-oxidants, essential oils, vitamins and phyto-sterols (to name a just a few). These healthful agents help our bodies to fight against germs, toxins and to boost immunity. Fresh Herbs also contain many anti-microbial substances that help keep our food protected from the microbes that can cause food borne illnesses.
So, before you pick up that bottle of dried out herbs next time you’re at the supermarket remember these 5 facts. Then head over to the produce section and pick up a clamshell of Local, Healthy, Fresh Herbs instead!