A Flavour-Foodie Herb Pairing Guide


Herbs are delicious and nutritious!






BASIL

Flavour: Liquorice and cloves

Cooking Tip: Add at the end of cooking to maximize flavour

Pair With: Tomatoes, garlic, olive oil, oregano, pasta, onions, chicken, eggs, pizza, green leaf salads, bell peppers, zucchini, apricots, berries, figs, peaches, plums


BAY

Flavour: Herbal and floral

Cooking Tip: Rarely available fresh, fresh is significantly less pungent than dried. Most prefer Turkish or Mediterranean bay leaf flavour over California. Put in at the beginning, remove before serving.

Pair With: Slow-cooked sauces, soups and stews, stocks, beans, game, chicken, lentils, potatoes, risotto, shellfish, tomatoes


CHIVES

Flavour: Light oniony taste

Cooking Tip: Use raw, or at the end of cooking. Add chive flowers to a salad or use chive stems to tie vegetables together.

Pair With: Eggs, potatoes, sauces, stews and soups, salads, mayonnaise, butter, sour cream, vegetables, stir-frys, breads


CILANTRO

Flavour: Bright and citrusy; some claim it tastes soapy

Cooking Tip: Can be used at beginning or end of cooking

Pair With: Spicy dishes, salsas, chiles, curries, salads, soups, chicken, fish, vinaigrette, apples, bananas, mangoes, pears, summer melons


DILL

Flavour: Combination of celery, fennel and parsley

Cooking Tip: Fresh packs greater flavour than dry ones. Add at beginning or end of cooking

Pair With: Fish, beans, hard boiled eggs, beets, soups, sour cream, cream cheese, dressings, yogurt, chicken, potato salad, meats


MINT

Flavour: Sweet, fresh, slightly astringent

Cooking Tip: Peppermint has a stronger flavour over spearmint. Could be added at beginning or end of cooking

Pair With: Lamb, chocolate, pork chops, jellies, sauces, cocktails, berries, figs and dates. oranges and limes, summer melons, cherries, apricots, plums, apples, pears


OREGANO

Flavour: Hint of sweetness with some spiciness

Cooking Tip: Strong, robust flavor especially if dried. Mediterranean oregano is milder than Mexican. Add at beginning of cooking; if adding in an herb bag, do not strip leaves from stems

Pair With: Pizza, tomatoes, pastas, eggs, cheeses, eggplant, meats, dressings, oil and butter, pesto


PARSLEY

Flavour: Flat parsley has a peppery bite and curly parsley is relatively bland

Cooking Tip: Flat parsley holds up better in longer cooking, curly looks great as a garnish. Stems have the strongest concentration of flavours and can be added diced finely or in a bouquet garnish

Pair With: Fish, vegetables, salad, rice, soups, stews, meatballs, pesto, sauces, marinades, bananas, coconuts, grapefruits, mangoes, pineapples, summer melons


ROSEMARY

Flavour: Pine-like, astringent

Cooking Tip: Add whole stems at beginning and remove before serving; great for the grill. Leaves can fall off so might want to use in bouquet garnish. If chopping then dice very finely as it can be quite tough

Pair With: Lamb, potatoes, marinades and oils, eggs, fish, poultry, pork, tomatoes, onions, ice cream, oranges, apricots


SAGE

Flavour: Slightly peppery with touch of mint

Cooking Tip: Robust flavour best with heavy foods. Add at the beginning of cooking

Pair With: Meats, sausage, cheese and cream based items, sweet and savoury breads, stuffings, beans, potatoes, risottos, tomato sauce


SAVOURY

Flavour: Peppery flavour, winter savoury is more pungent than summer

Cooking Tip: Can be added at beginning or end or cooking

Pair With: Beans, meat, poultry, grilled vegetables, game


TARRAGON

Flavour: Liquorice, fennel, sweet

Cooking Tip: Can easily overpower dishes. Heat releases flavour, cook with at beginning

Pair With: Chicken, shellfish, eggs, béarnaise sauce, potatoes, vinegar


THYME

Flavour: Sweet, mildly pungent

Cooking Tip: Great paired when cooked with parsley and bay. Can be added at beginning. If using stems prepare for stronger flavour but remove before serving

Pair With: Broths, soups and stews, flatbreads, meat, poultry, potatoes, stuffings, marinades, cherries, figs, grapes, honeydew melon, peaches, pears

Image by Markus Spiske
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