Before we dive deep into cooking let’s talk a little about flavor versus salt. In today’s world everything seems to be flavored with salt or some type of MSG or sodium. It doesn’t matter which name you go by in the end it is salt. On average we consume over 3400 milligrams a day but we should only be taking in between 1,500 and 2,000 milligrams a day. 1500 milligrams of sodium is equal to about 3/4th of a tablespoon. That is a lot of salt! Why not add depth to your food instead with herbs? Not only do you get great flavor but herbs have healing properties and can stop something before it even starts. You can also be bold and enjoy the flavor of the actual food itself.
For instance turmeric is good for inflammation and keeping colds at bay. It will also help lessen the pain of arthritis. It has a nice spice to it that is flavorful and not hot and paired with other herbs or a nice homemade alfredo sauce you will find a flavor depth that will jump start your senses all over again. Let’s not forget it adds a nice yellow tint to your food that is just festive J
A simple act of sautéing onions over a cast iron skillet and adding them to a dish can drastically change what you are eating. Left over mashed potatoes can be changed up for the next day with this simple addition. Onions help boost memory so why not sauté some up to go over your sauces, meat and veggies.
To add depth to any other herbs add Thyme. Thyme brings out the taste of the food and the herb allowing for a flavor that melts on your taste buds. Thyme, Rosemary, black pepper, all are complimentary herbs you’ll want to always have on hand. Play around with them and slowly mix a little in with different dishes to see how it can add depth.
Garlic on the other hand can compliment or stand alone. You can smash it, chop it or leave it whole. I prefer to smash mine with a garlic press because then it is fine enough you can work it in to the whole dish. Garlic adds a nice flavor while healing you as well. Garlic is a natural antibiotic and will help keep you healthy in a natural way. I always use fresh garlic because when you but powdered garlic most of the time it is salt that is garlic flavored and if it is just garlic powder you won’t get the flavor fresh garlic will give you.
Don’t discount the actual full flavor of just the food itself. Veggies such as zucchini, potatoes, onions, bell peppers, jalapeño peppers (if you like it spicy) all cooked lightly together give a full flavor palette for a meal. If you don’t feel like cooking add corn off of the cob, a cut up avocado, a cut up tomato and a little cut up onion to a bowl and mix it up well. Avocado has an oily texture that will blend as a dressing and all those flavors mixed together will delight any eater. Cut up some andouille sausage and heat it up on the stove and add to the corn mixture for a nice meal and then cold left over’s the best. In this instance notice no herbs and no salt was added, this is pure food flavor.
Let me throw in a note about oils. Olive oil can leave a strong flavor in your food. If you want to change that up you can use oils such as Grapeseed, Sunflower, Safflower and others that will not leave that after taste as Olive oil does. All of three of the above are high heat oils.
I challenge you to go a month without adding salt to your food and instead dabbling in herbs and eating foods as they are and you’ll see that after that month everything else just taste salty. The only salt in my house is kept in the bathroom for baths. Add salt to a hot bath with a few drops of an essential oil, light a candle, dim the lights and sit back and relax the cares of the day away.