Meatless Monday - The Secret is in the Spices

  Jars of Spices and Possibilities In this quest for healthy, I am also on a mission to eliminate many of the salts in my diet as well as the many preservatives we see in prepared foods. As a kid, we...

 

Jars of Spices and Possibilities
Jars of Spices and Possibilities

In this quest for healthy, I am also on a mission to eliminate many of the salts in my diet as well as the many preservatives we see in prepared foods. As a kid, we often had Good Seasoning packaged mix with our vinegar and oil. It was our standard, and I remember enjoying this “homemade” dressing. As you review the packette, you will be shocked by the salt, and the many ingredients that you do not recognize, so here is my suggested list of how to cut back on the new “four letter word” or salt to create some fabulous seasonings for a classic salad.

Dried Seasonings in a jar
Dried Seasonings in a jar

Italian Dry Salad Dressing

- there are many similar recipes that "copy" the Good Seasoning concept

Ingredients:

  • 1 tablespoon garlic powder
  • 1 tablespoon onion powder
  • 1 tablespoon sugar ( I omitted this, but this is classic in the recipe)
  • 2 tablespoons oregano ( I always crush in my hand to release the most flavor before adding)
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon basil
  • ¼ teaspoon ground thyme
  • 1 tablespoon Parsley
  • ¼ teaspoon celery seed
  • 1 tablespoon salt (I used my favorite Morton’s Garlic Sea Salt here as my substitution)

Directions:

  1. Mix dry ingredients together.
  2. Store this dry mix in a small canning jar and use as needed. You will need 2 tablespoons in a batch of dressing.

Actual Dressing (Liquid)  Ingredients:

  • 2 tablespoons Dry Mix (above)
  • ¼ cup apple cider vinegar ( really anything goes here…I love Sherry, White or Red Balsamic, Red or White Wine Vinegars, the list is endless)
  • ? cup oil
  • 2 tablespoons water

I often add a good 2 tablespoons of Dijon mustard to this mix too.

Directions:

  1. Mix all ingredients together in a small jar and shake well before using. I like this chilled on my salad, so I often create this ahead.

Creole Seasoning

Ingredients for Creole Seasoning
Ingredients for Creole Seasoning

Again, many supermarkets will carry a Cajun or Creole-style seasoning, ( Zatarain’s is a great choice, but when you see the salt content leading with almost 20%, you might re-think this choice)

Try this as your own version of Creole Seasoning

Creole Seasoning

Ingredients:

  • 1 ½ teaspoons garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 tablespoon paprika
  • 1 ½ tablespoons oregano ( I always crush in my hand to release the most flavor before adding)
  • 1 tablespoon black pepper
  • 1 ½ teaspoons basil
  • ¼ teaspoon ground thyme
  • ½ teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 ½ tablespoon salt (I used my favorite Morton’s Garlic Sea Salt here as my substitution)
  • Directions:

  1. Mix together and store in an airtight container.
  2. Makes about 1/3 cup. This fits well into the smallest canning jar
  3. If  you are creating New Orleans fare, this is a must as the final seasoning.
  4. This is added to my flour for my dredge of my famous Black Bean Cakes.

Then this past week we met a Dry Rub for Steaks or Chicken. Again, while this has some salt, it is much more controlled when you make this Rub yourself over purchasing in the store.

Dry Rub Ingredients:

( enough to coat about 1 – ½ pounds of meat)

Ingredients:

  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1/4 teaspoon onion powder
  • ½ teaspoon garlic powder or garlic flakes
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • ½ teaspoon black pepper
  • ½ teaspoon coriander, ground
  • ¼ - ½ teaspoon red chili flakes, crushed
  • 1 teaspoon corn starch
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt (I used my favorite Morton’s Garlic Sea Salt here as my substitution)

Directions:

1.Mix together and store in an airtight container.

Create your own finishing seasonings to better control your salt.