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Thyme, sage, mint. Herbs can usually be grown quite well on the windowsill at home and can contribute to a health-conscious diet.
Aromatic and healthy
Growing fresh herbs yourself requires little work and can succeed even on the narrowest windowsill. Herbs are used in the kitchen for seasoning and ensure that salt and fat can be dispensed with, since they generally emphasize the taste of the food itself. In addition, some herbs such as parsley or chives contain vitamins and thus contribute to a healthy diet. Herbs also bring freshness to the food. Their aromas from anise-like to lemony give many dishes the final touch.
Anyone who wants to bring a little more variety into their kitchen should, like top Hamburg cook Cornelia Poletto, opt for a "herbal aroma kitchen". This also under the aspect of healthy eating, because herbs can often replace salt and fat. Many dishes are unthinkable without the addition of herbs. For example, the Italian classic Caprese, in which tomatoes and mozzarella are prepared with balsamic vinegar and which is the icing on the cake with basil with the "wonderful taste of its own". Or roast lamb, to which fresh rosemary or thyme is added shortly before the end and whose taste is essentially determined by this. The cook is also very enthusiastic about a herb salad with "Fromage blanc", a type of quark from France. "It's fresh and very digestible."
Larger range of herbs as an indication of more conscious cooking Daniel Rühlemann from the herb gardener of the same name in Horstedt near Bremen, says: "In herbs, there has been a real boom in recent years." In Germany, not only parsley and chives are so now Variants of basil, thyme, mint and much more are in demand. Poletto sees the now larger range in retail as an indication of more conscious cooking: “People now know that I don't need flavor enhancers. They know that they bring enough flavor into it with herbs. ”Herbs give the dishes an individual touch thanks to their fragrance and aroma. Carola Reich from Dr.-Oetker-Verlag in Bielefeld explains: "They not only replace salt and pepper, but you can also do without fat."
Trying is about studying Every year more and more herbs appear in this country. Asian moringa, red watercress, wasabi arugula or Japanese flower cress are just a few of the so-called newcomers. The newly emerging diversity also raises the question: what goes with what? Reich therefore advises: "Don't be frightened, but try it out." The cookbook author Karin Wittmann from Schwangau near Füssen says that in principle everything is possible: "But there are combinations that harmonize well and those that do not go well together. My tip: first use the herb solo to get to know its taste and then combine it with your favorites. ”For the herb expert Christel Rosenfeld from Valetta in Malta, basil, dill, mint and sage are real soloists. If you want to bring more freshness and lightness into your food, mint is the best choice.
A recommendation from Cornelia Poletto therefore suggests adding chopped mint to the asparagus risotto at the end, thereby giving the rather heavy dish of rice, broth, asparagus, parmesan and butter a surprising freshness. Wittmann explains that plants that come from the same region often make good team players. Sometimes these are already commercially available as a mixture, such as the classic "Herbs of Provence" made from savory, marjoram, lavender, oregano, rosemary and thyme. The “Grie Soß”, also known as green sauce, is also well mixed at Frankfurt, which is very popular with asparagus right now. Borage, garden cress, chervil, parsley, pimpinelle, sorrel and chives are used for this. Herbs usually serve as a fine flavor. Basically, herbs should not cover the aromas of the respective main ingredient, but should rather complement it. It is therefore important to pay attention to the special properties of the preparation, because many are quite sensitive and can inadvertently change the taste.
Volatile essential oils
Regarding herbs, Poletto recommends: “They have many volatile essential oils. That's why it's best to sprinkle them fresh at the end. ”Only strong types are suitable for cooking, such as savory, laurel, marjoram, sage, rosemary or thyme. "But you should take them out at the end because they become unsightly and taste bitter." In general, it should be noted that the herbs are only rinsed briefly with water, dried and cut into small pieces just before use. Reich emphasizes: “And really cut, not chop. Otherwise they will be crushed and the essential oils go into the cutting board instead of into the food. ”(Sb)
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