For more advanced cooks creating flavors profiles is a must. Here are some herbs components that will help you create flavors into your next dish.

Fresh herbs are mostly composed of 70 to 90% water with flavors compounds, and aroma from essential oils. The aroma of herbs is released when herbs are cut in to it. As you know depending on what herbs you may use, fresh or dried , there are specific advantages in using them at the right time of cooking.

Dried herbs require to be added in the beginning of cooking or to mid cooking time because of the need to absorb liquid and release flavor. On the other side when using fresh herbs their purpose is to be added at the end of cooking or just before food is served since they already have fully potential and retain the essential oils. ( herbs essential oils that create aroma are volatile to air, dried herbs do not contain essential oils)

Use those following herbs and their flavors profiles when cooking

Lemon grass- use this herb to add citrus and floral flavors compounds to your dish.

Cilantro herb is characterized by sweet, fresh floral and have a high intensity flavor compounds

Bay herb, use this to dishes that require a pine and wood with high intensity flavor

Dill- fresh citrusy and pine flavor compounds

Mint is characterized by flavors of sweet , fresh, citrus, pine with a high intensity flavor

Basil- sweet, fresh , floral, licorice, pine , and have a high intensity flavor

Sage, use this herb for enhancing fresh and pine flavors with high intensity to the dish

Parsley- sweet and fresh with a low intensity flavors

Rosemary – fresh , floral and wood with a high intensity

Thyme- fresh flavors with added citrus, floral pine that have a high intensity

Here is a recipe using fresh herbs to make a roasted red pepper pesto

Serving 2 garlic cloves

3/4c pine nuts

1 bunch fresh basil

1t salt

1/4t black pepper

1 cup of aromatic oil like extra virgin olive oil or walnut oil.

1 cup roasted red bell peppers

1/2c Parmesan cheese or asiago cheese.

Method: Place everything in a food processor or blender with exception of oil. Mix by adding oil gradually to incorporate. You can adjust taste at the end with more salt and black pepper.

Use this roasted pepper pesto for Italian sandwiches based or as a side for grilled vegetables or to serve along pasta dishes. Use it as a marinate, dip for chips, make pizza to replace tomato sauce. Or simple use it to cook with by creating a chicken red pepper pesto dish

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