Winter is the perfect season to cook more and to reinvent ourselves as master chefs. A secret that improves the taste of almost any food and is available to anyone is... winter spices, the accessible gold that anyone has it stored in the kitchen.
Here's what the cold season has to offer when it comes to spices:
When it's winter outside, the house smells like cinnamon. A versatile spice, good to sprinkle in teas or over various cakes. Even the roasts taste better thanks to the cinnamon, not to mention the unmistakable aroma of the mulled wine. Looking for the perfect dessert on cold evenings? A portion of ripe apples stuffed with nuts, cinnamon and honey sounds great, doesn't it? An advantage of the queen of all spices is that it lowers insulin resistance, lowers blood sugar and has multiple anti-diabetic effects.
Every queen of spices needs a king, and this can only be one: ginger. It's a must-have in the kitchen during the long winter months, because of its antioxidant and antiseptic properties. In teas, it becomes a true medicine for stuffy noses and sore throats. Ginger baths relax muscles and relieve cold symptoms. From a gastronomic point of view, you can use it in salads, steaks, teas and soups, as well as desserts.
Their intense and quick taste, plus the very strong smell makes them the perfect condiment for seasoning meat or fish dishes. Used in the right quantities, cloves can give a special flavor to desserts, compotes or biscuits.
In the kitchen, this condiment is suitable for meat dishes, but we like to add it especially to mulled wine. It has a sweet-spicy taste that fits wonderfully for both salty and sweet dishes.
Related to ginger, turmeric is the spice that gives that orange-yellow color of the sunset to the food. It is ideal for stews, baked goods, bakery products, sauces, cream soups, vegetable dishes, hot or cold drinks.
Used in small amounts in recipes, cardamom enriches the taste of soups, stews, puddings or rolls. You can also sprinkle it in fresh fruit salads, due to its unmistakable sweet-peppery taste.
Go on, try eating baked potatoes with rosemary at least once and we'll promise you that you'll repeat the experience as soon as you can. A single well-chosen spice, such as rosemary, can radically change the taste of ordinary dishes, especially when it comes to meat preparations (chicken, lamb, pork).
What do you say: did we convince you? Will you try a new spice from our list? Or did we miss something? What are your favorite winter spices and in what dishes do you use them most often?