Gone are the days when pepper and bay leaf made up the entire list of spices. Today, a special spice is grown for each occasion: if you want trout rolls in jelly, use sherry, and if you want to normalize the functioning of the heart or liver, use red pepper and cumin. In addition, the smell of spice alone is enough to give an individual touch to your dish, and if you add a handful of fragrant seasoning to it, the dish will seem even juicier and tastier. In this article, we will tell you what culinary, and most importantly, medicinal properties carry a variety of spices and how to properly store them so that they benefit our health.
Even in ancient times, man first breathed the smell of spices. Even then, these exotic dishes were assigned not only a gastronomic role, they were used both for making incense and for treatment. So, it was believed that thyme sharpens the mind, and marjoram is a good remedy for headaches. For example, the Egyptians were familiar with the antiseptic properties of certain plants and used them in embalming. Some spices contain large amounts of essential oils that are toxic to many microorganisms. And the antibacterial properties of black pepper, cinnamon, ginger, cloves prevent various intestinal disorders.
And what subtle aromas exude exotic spices! With their help, you can enjoy fragrant cumin bread, vanilla ice cream, apple pie with cinnamon. For a long time, in the arsenal of housewives there were only traditional and, of course, healthy peppers, bay leaves, and maybe cloves with cinnamon. But today the spicy palette has been significantly replenished with new, previously little-known spices.
Seasoned life gives us combinations that we did not suspect before. For example, black and capsicum, coriander and turmeric give us curry seasoning. A mixture of cinnamon, ginger, cardamom, nutmeg and mustard seed is used in Indian cuisine when preparing meat dishes. A successful combination of Chinese pepper, star anise, cinnamon, cloves and fennel called “five spices” is used in China as an additive to pork.
However, when using such wonderful spices, one must, however, be very careful, since thoughtlessly poured seasoning can spoil the dish, and too many spices can interrupt the taste of food. And so that this does not happen, listen to our advice:
ground spices and seasonings in powder are added when the dish is almost ready or during a meal, and whole ones are put first;
Coloring spices such as curry, paprika, and saffron are more effective when heated in fat while sautéing vegetables or meat.
Now that we have gotten a little familiar with the culinary properties of some spices, it is time to learn about the healing effects of spices. So, INDIAN CUMIN (in other words, cumin) improves the functioning of the liver, gallbladder, joints and muscles, reduces swelling, reduces body fat, relieves runny nose, lacrimation, excessive sweating, and helps with constipation. In addition, cumin seeds are chewed after dinner to stimulate digestion.
RED PEPPER normalizes the work of the heart, small intestine, blood vessels. It is worth remembering about it during the flu, SARS, with convulsions and spasms, with bronchial asthma and bone fractures. In addition, red pepper seeds help with menstrual pain.
yellow seeds saffron and turmeric stimulate the gastrointestinal tract, help with osteochondrosis, cholelithiasis and urolithiasis, improve lymph flow.
In the treatment of eye diseases, breast diseases and migraine use BLACK PEPPER. Its peas will help with pain in the knee and elbow joints, as well as with frequent colds, with back pain.
fragrant seeds CARDAMOM chewed to refresh the mouth and stimulate digestion.
BUT CAYENNE PEPPER gives sharpness and removes a lot of harmful substances from the body. Detoxification will be even more effective if paired with cayenne pepper, use lemon.
But when using spices, remember:
Those who have an excess amount of gastric juice should not use spices that enhance digestion: hops, chicory, pepper, which contain bitter glycosides. Horseradish, mustard contain garlic and mustard oils, which have a beneficial effect on the gastric mucosa. But they also need to be consumed in small quantities, then the spices will benefit.
Many spices have an antimutagenic effect, that is, they neutralize environmentally harmful substances that accumulate in products during their production and preparation. Therefore, they are good to combine with fried and smoked meat, fish, poultry.
In order for spices to be beneficial, they must be stored properly.. First of all, spice jars should be small – during long-term storage, spices lose their aroma, taste and valuable properties, so there should be few of them – as much as you need to add to food. In addition, the essential oils contained in spices, which constitute their main value, easily evaporate, so the jars should be with tight-fitting or, even better, screw-top lids. This means that spices are stored worse in wooden and ceramic jars than in plastic or glass ones. Spices retain their beneficial properties better when not ground, and if stored properly, they are effective throughout the year, so it makes no sense to create stocks.