It's Autumn in the U.K. and yesterday during a walk in the woods I was reminded how much I love the Autumn smells, the musty, sweet leaves, bonfires, wet soil; it all creates Autumn in my mind.
This time of year is linked to the Metal element and the Lung and Large Intestine meridian in Five element theory. The end of the Large Intestine meridian is just by our nostrils so odour and our sense of smell is very linked to this colourful time of year. So now is a perfect time to experiment with herbs and spices.
To get you started here's some herby/spicy advice
- If you want a particular or distinct flavour add herbs near the end, for a more blended flavour add at the beginning of cooking.
- Make the most of ground spices and herbs by adding them towards the end of the cooking time.
- For dishes that take a long time to cook use whole spices and bay leaves, you could tie a bundle together so they are easy to remove at the end, just before serving.
- For dressing and marinades allow a few hours of steeping so the flavours can meld together yummily
Pumpkin Spice mix
Mix 3 tablespoons ground cinnamon, 2 teaspoons ground ginger, 2 teaspoons ground nutmeg, 1 ½ teaspoons ground allspice and 1 ½ teaspoons ground cloves and store in a glass jar.
For a spice mix for meat and roasting vegetables you could leave out the cloves, nutmeg, and allspice, then add additional 1 tsp, cumin, 1tsp coriander, 2 tsp turmeric and 1/2 tsp cardamom, 1 tsp garlic powder, 1 tsp onion powder to this blend.
Enjoy spicing things up this Autumn!