Italian seasoning is a delicious mixture of different spices, which are used for Italian dishes, including sauces, meatballs, lasagne recipes, and more. A typical blend would include dried basil, dried marjoram, dried oregano and dried sage. Italian seasoning is a staple in most pantries, but it's not one that has to be bought at the store. It can be easily prepared at home. Other variations include the addition of coriander and red pepper flakes. Representing the traditional seasonings of Italian cuisine, this flavour-booster has become a kitchen classic for its versatility and ease of use in a wide variety of recipes.
How to select
Italian seasonings can be bought whole or in the premixed and packaged ground form. You can easily make your own mix with dried herbs that you already have on-hand: combine two teaspoons each of basil, marjoram and oregano with one teaspoon of sage. Whole and dried spices are much more aromatic and flavoursome than their pre packaged alternatives. Whole spices to be added in the Italian seasoning should be compact and free of any blemishes. Just like with other dried spices, when purchasing Italian seasoning, try to select that which is organically grown since this will give you more assurance that it has not been irradiated. While buying packaged Italian seasoning mix, check the expiry date and feel for lumpiness ( sign of moisture inside the packet.
· Italian seasoning is a wonderful blend of herbs and spices, which can be used in a range of recipes of Italian cuisine.
· Sprinkle it on pizza, sub sandwiches and fresh tomatoes or stir it into pasta sauce, meat marinades or soups and stews.
· Use it to season beef, poultry and lamb before roasting or mix it with butter and Parmesan cheese for a delicious French bread spread
· The Italian seasoning may be added to beans, vegetables or meats to give a characteristic Italian flavour to the preparations.
· Italian seasoning can be used to marinade chicken and as a dip with nachos, tacos, tortillas and stir fry vegetables.
How to store
As with all herbs and spices, keep in an airtight container, away from heat, moisture and sunlight (avoid storing near the stove or windows). Seasoning blends typically retain their freshness for one to two years. Italian seasoning will not spoil, but it will lose strength over time. You can test for freshness by crushing a little bit in your hand. The color should be vibrant and the aroma should be apparent. If not, it's time to replace itStore in an airtight container.
· The delectable blend of herbs has quite a few health benefits owing to the herbs used. The herbs like oregano and pepper help in improving digestive functions, reducing phlegm and enhancing immunity.