Sunday, February 17, 2008
Salt Free Spice Blends #1
You cannot create tasty, low salt dishes without an arsenal of spices and spice blends. I've got two drawers and two shelves full of various spices. Some good salt free combinations are available at most local grocery stores. Mrs. Dash has several salt free spice blends, and most stores carry a pretty good selection. I like the Garlic Herb, Onion & Herb, Southwest Chipotle, and Mesquite blends the best. However, I don't use the Mrs. Dash blends much because I don't like the inclusion of dried orange peel and/or lemon peel in so many of the products. To me, it makes everything taste the same. I've tried the marinades but didn't like them either; the flavors were too harsh. I'd rather make my own salt free or low salt marinades. McCormick also has some tasty salt free blends. One favorite is Garlic & Herb. Trader Joe's salt free seasoning blend is good too.
I've found the salt free version of Cavender's All Purpose Greek Seasoning at local grocery stores in addition to Chef Paul Prudhomme's Magic Salt Free Seasoning. I like the Magic seasoning sprinkled on fried or scrambled eggs, fish and chicken breasts. Although I'm Greek, I just don't care much for the Cavender's; it's kind of blah. I've found Johnny's Jamaica Me Crazy seasoned pepper in my local store; it's salt free and spicy.
Every time I go grocery shopping, I check the spice aisle. You never know when another blend will hit the shelves. I'm also always on the look out when I shop at Trader Joe's, Cost Plus World Market, and Costco.
The spice blends are invaluable in low salt cooking. I don't use them much at the table, mainly in cooking. They make a real difference in grilling, broiling, roasting, or sauteing plain cuts of meats. They add a nice dimension of flavor when creating crumb crusts for meats too. Mixed with mayo, they really add something special to sandwiches; mixed with sour cream they also can provide a tasty, low sodium dip.