My “Not Your Grandmother’s Herbes de Provence” a very useful Herb/Spice Mix

I love Spices and Herbs!

I love Spice and Herb Mixes!

But mostly I like to use my own spice/herb mixes in my cooking.  This particular one, I call My “Not Your Grandmother’s herbes de Provence”…

It is a mixture of mostly Mediterranean flavors.  Adds great zippy flavors to almost anything.

Let’s be logical… This is cheap, cheap, cheap.

May not look like it, but making your own mix of herbs is a real money saver.  Sure, you have to buy 6 herbs, a lemon and add salt and pepper to taste.  Sounds expensive.  BUT, the recipe I am giving makes about 12 ounces of mix.  Buy one of the pre-mixed commercial brands and you will see what I mean about what a bargain this is.

Let’s be even more logical…This is tasty, tasty, tasty AND adaptable to your own tastes, adaptable to your own tastes.

Herbes de Provence is a classic recipe.  Go ahead and google the phrase, and you will see a combination using mostly Thyme, Fennel, Basil and even Lavender.  Truth is, I am taking liberties when I call my mixture anything close to Herbes de Provence.  In the classic sense, it should be called a Mediterranean herb mix instead.  I just like the name, and it has caught on.  My point is, if you like garlic, by all  means, add garlic.  If you like citrus, by all means, add some lemon zest.  If your wife likes Dill…  By god, dill is in the mix!

Be a cook.  play around and get a mixture you like.

And the logic continues… Versatile.  Take a moment and ponder what you can do with this.  I use this mix much more often that salt.  I started sprinkling this on eggs, then chicken salad (yes, the eggs came first, then the chicken).  You can mix this inside dough, an herb mix loaf of bread is a beautiful thing, and herbs mixed in your pizza dough adds a little extra zing.  Fish is wonderful with a pinch of this, as well as pork chops.  Soups and potato salad with my mix has a lot of zip.  It makes cheese pop (like the dip I will show in a future post), as well as a topping for pizza.

Almost anytime I see salt in a recipe, I will ponder whether I can use a pinch of this instead because…

Logically, it is so much more healthy for you than salt.

I am lucky, it was never a medical necessity for me to cut back on my salt.  But I do like to think I have a bit of logic in me.  Let’s ponder a nice piece of fish with a tsp of “Not your Grandmother’s Herbes de provence”.  Low salt, but certainly not – low flavor added.  With a nice bit of “Not your Grandmother’s Herbes de Provence” added to the fish, it tastes of dill, garlic, thyme and even a little citrus zest. All by taking a pinch and tossing it on.

Since, even Mr Spock would agree that you also have the benefit of knowing your mix is fresher than anything on the grocery shelf.

Herbs stay fresh for about 6 months.  After that, they begin to lose their taste.  Whenever I make a batch, it goes in a ziplock bag and I write the date on the bag.  This bag will last me about 2 months.

I am lucky enough to have a great herb store.  Always in stock, always a great price, and always fresh.  But even buying the $1.99 McCormick spices, the logic of my arguments will hold.  Give it a shot, you will be amazed how much you use this recipe…

5 TBS dried Tarragon
5 TBS dried Oregano
5 TBS dried Dill
5 TBS dried Thyme
5 TBS dried Rosemary
5 TBS dried Garlic Flakes
2 TBS Sea Salt
2 TBS Fresh ground Pepper
1 TBS dried Lemon Zest

Store in a sealed plastic ziplock bag, airtight in a dark drawer, and stays fresh for 6 months or more.

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