Herbs and spices have been used for a long time to add flavor and season fresh and cooked foods. Most of the herbs and spices are made from seeds, leaves, and plants that dried.
How to Purchase
The herbs and spices should be fresh when purchased. Fresh herbs and spices usually have a piquant and lively smell. The color of the herbs needs to be lively and have an intense fragrance. Whole spices usually have a shelf life of about 2 to 5 years. Ground spices on the other hand could last for about 6 months to 2 years. Leafy herbs last between 3 months and 2 years.
Reading the Labels
While buying herbs and spices, you need to be very careful with the labels. Check the expiration date of the spices to ensure that you purchase just enough to last the specified useful period. You also need to check the PLU of the spices to identify the country of manufacture and whether they are conventional or organic.
The effectiveness of herbs and spices will depend on how well you use them on your food. You should use the savory and sweet herbs in cooking or baking. Use the relatively dry herbs more frequently than the fresh herbs. For the spices that have seeds, you can also crush the seed to make the spices finer and more consumable.
Spices and herbs have antioxidants that help the body. They help in aiding digestion and making the food tastier. It is important to note that some herbs and spices have been known to trigger allergic reactions from people with allergies. You should therefore try using them more carefully among people that suffer from allergies.