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Essential Herbs, Spices and Sauces in the Kitchen

Essential Herbs, Spices and Sauces in the Kitchen

When it comes to adding flavors to your meals, it's important to have basic herbs and spices in your kitchen. The essential herbs (fresh or dried), oils, spice mixes you should have at home are listed - use them to complete your kitchen pantry!



Certain basic spices are essential in the kitchen to bring flavor to your recipes.

  • Basil : great for italian recipes and tomato based preparations.
  • Oregano : ideal for vegetables and meats as well as mediterranean meals. Origano is more flavorful when dried.
  • Cumin : the perfect spice for stews and sauces.
  • Thyme : great with poultry and vegetables.
  • Rosemary : works in harmony when mixed with lemon flavors as well as meats like lamb and game.
  • Garlic and onion powder : both are perfect substitutes to replace fresh garlic and fresh onions in recipes.
  • Cinnamon : mostly used in desserts, cinnamon also works well with chili or Morrocan food.
  • Bay leaf : it adds a Mediterranean flavor to soups, stews and sauces. Don't forget to take them out before serving. 
  • Paprika : available in both mild and strong strains, paprika adds flavor and color to your meals.
  • Coriander : although it's not enjoyed by everyone, it's great when used in Indian dishes, North-African or Mexican dishes.


In addition to spices, specific sauces can be very helpful when preparing flavorful family meals.

  • Soya sauce : you naturally associate this sauce with sushis or asian dishes but it's also used to add salt to recipes. Add it to rice, to choice meat cuts or salmon before rolling it in sesame seeds. Soya sauce is also a good substitute for vinegar and you can freely use it for your salads or marinades.
  • Clam sauce : this sauce is mostly used in asian dishes but it's also delicious with sauté vegetables, poultry, grilled fish, Chineese noodles, rice, marinades, BBQ sauces and more. The possibilities are almost endless with the clam sauce - smell the sauce and you will be inspired.
  • Broth : broth comes in many ways - liquid, powder, pre-portionned squares - and they can easily be added to recipes. Most popular broths are beef, chicken, vegetable and fish. It can be added to cooking water when making pasta or rice, it can be used in sauces, soups, dressings, marinades, etc. They also replace salt in some recipes.

Other condiments

Many other condiments can enhance flavors of your favorite dishes. Some of popular condiments include: ginger, star anise, nutmeg, turmeric, Cayenne pepper, gourmet salts - try them, experiment - you might just transform your favorite recipe into something more flavorful!

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