As some of you may have heard me say before, over the past year and a half I have been on a journey to eat healthier and cleaner. That has meant cooking a lot more food from scratch for myself and my family. It has been and continues to be a huge learning process for me. One that I am taking step-by-step.
One of the things that I am learning, is how to season food. Because, I used to cook from a lot of canned or packaged products, I didn’t have a huge need to add spices or seasonings to food. However, now that I am cooking more from scratch I am starting to use more and more spices and seasonings to add flavor to my cooking. Nescafé with Coffee-Mate, and their new approach to Better Together, has inspired me to come up with some of my own flavor combinations.
To learn how “spice things up” I have been trying take inspiration from different flavor pairings that I notice in recipes and foods and incorporate them into my cooking. If you are also just learning how to season, these simple parings are a great place to get started.
My 5 Favorite Flavor Combinations:
Tomato and Oregano – Oregano works great for homemade spaghetti sauces, pizza sauces, tomato soups, pastas with tomatoes in, or even sprinkled on a tomato/ cheese grilled sandwich.
Chili Powder and Cumin- I recently discovered a great recipe for homemade enchilada sauce that used a chili powder/ cumin pairing which served as my inspiration for using this combination anytime I want to spice foods up! I now love adding it to chili recipes, chicken tortilla soup, taco meat, fajitas, and of course enchilada sauce.
Potatoes and Garlic- Inspiration for this paring came when I was at a local fair and the amazing aroma of “garlic fries” filled the air! It is such a classic pairing that I don’t know why I hadn’t thought of it before. I used that inspiration in my own cooking by adding fresh garlic or garlic powder to homemade fries, baked potatoes and mashed potatoes. Just a few days ago, I added a few cloves of fresh minced garlic to my mashed potatoes, and let me tell you, it was pure heaven!
Lemon and Ginger- Last Christmas made some delicious gingerbread cookies with a lemon drizzle icing. The lemon and ginger complimented each other so well, that it is now one of my favorite combination to experiment with. I add a small pinch of lemon to lemonade, lemon-chicken, a hot lemon drink I make and even to the crust of lemon bars. I have learned that it is a very strong flavor, so just a pinch goes a long way!
Chocolate and Cinnamon- I found this amazing pairing quite by accident. A few years ago my son and I where baking a chocolate cake and when I wasn’t paying attention he added some cinnamon to the mix. After we baked it, and tried it, I discovered that it had this amazing rich chocolate flavor to it, that I hadn’t tasted the other times I had made that recipe. Ever since then I had just a tiny bit of cinnamon to all of my chocolate baking such as cakes and brownies. You can’t taste the cinnamon in the final product, but adding it always makes the chocolate flavor, taste a lot richer and darker. If you are a fan of dark chocolates, you will love it!
Nescafé is also experimenting with new flavor combinations and wants to invite you to try them. They have paired the rich flavor is Nescafé Coffee with the creamy taste of Nestle Coffee-mate creamer in one easy to prepare bottle. As I am not a coffee drinker, I have not tried this new combination, but I can imagine that this classic pairing will have coffee drinkers falling in love. Nescafé with Coffee-mate comes in Original, French Vanilla and Hazelnut, giving you a chance to experiment with your own favorite flavors. To give Nescafé with Coffee-mate a try, be sure to visit their website, to download a $.75 off coupon. You can also enter my giveaway here to win a 2 week supply to try at home! The giveaway will end at 11:59pm on 10/27. To enter, fill out the form below.