Time to shake things up with our spice mixes
Not only can herbs, spices and chillies be savoured individually but when combined, these fabulous ingredients can create some of the most delicious tastes on earth! The spice mixes can be as simple as a combination of 2-3 ingredients or as complex as a several-stage process involving many techniques.
Their main purpose is to impart flavour to the food, such as with dry rubs but also to help break it down, as with wet marinades and meat. Spice mixes may be used at any stage of the cooking process. The beauty of spice mixes is their versatility and variety - the possibilities are seemingly endless and each mix can be tailored to your own taste. A piece of plain grilled chicken can be enlivened with just a sprinkle of your favourite seasoning, either before or after cooking.
For convenience, some of the more popular spice mixes and blends are widely available commercially and these can save a lot of time and effort. You will need to shop around though as the quality and authenticity of these may vary from one brand to the next and as with most things, your choice will be determined by personal taste. It is also just as easy to make most of these at home, with a little preparation and a well-stocked larder. Of course we can only guess and approximate some of those famous recipes which contain “secret ingredients” though!