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Contest: Get Spicy!

February 18th, 2010 3 Comments

–By Nutritionista

Do you drool at the thought of gourmet spices like black truffle salt and smoked paprika? Do you like free things? If you do, you’ll probably love our contest! More info on that at the end of this post. But first, a word about spices.

Spices are a surefire way to jazz up whatever you’re cooking without adding calories, sugar/carbs, fat, etc. Investing in high-quality spices will go a long way in helping you build a healthy but absolutely delicious kitchen. To save some cash, buy them in bulk from your local co-op or online (those little bottles from the grocery store are PRICEY!). To get you going, here are my favorite versatile spices:

  • Cinnamon. Think outside the box with this one and add it to both savory and sweet dishes! Put some into your coffee grinds for an aromatic blend. Of course, it makes a great addition to yogurt, oatmeal, or smoothies.
  • Ginger. With as much antioxidants in a teaspoon as a cup of spinach, ginger can really do no wrong in my book. You can use dried ginger, but I love the fresh stuff. Try adding it to vegetable dishes, marinades, and sauces. Of course, it’s great on sweet dishes or even fresh fruit.
  • Dried Red Pepper (like crushed red pepper, cayenne, and paprika). I find that adding just a little of any of these spices to a dish makes it instantaneously more complex and (of course) a bit spicy.
  • The Italians: Basil, Oregano, Thyme, Rosemary. I’m no fashion expert, but these are like the Little Black Dress of cooking. They taste good with almost anything and are hard to mess up.
  • Turmeric/Cumin. You can give any dish an exotic twist just by adding one of these spices. Stir it into egg, chicken, or tuna salad or add to simmer sauces. It’s also great in vinaigrettes and dips. Make a quick rub with some combo of cayenne, paprika, cumin, salt, and pepper.

Now it’s your turn to get spicy! The Spice Station that Kallah frequents generously offered to donate a few ounces of their gourmet smoked paprika (it’s good, let me tell you) to one lucky reader!

All you have to do is share your favorite recipe that incorporates or features paprika by Monday, February 22, at 12am EST. Email all recipes to nutritionista@morethanmary.com. If you can, include a picture of the finished product! Then, we’ll poll you readers to find out which recipe reigns supreme in terms of deliciousness potential. The winner will get the gourmet smoked paprika. Happy cooking!

  • DailyBaxter

    Smoky Sweet Sweet Potato Fries

    Peel a sweet potato. Slice it up into skinny french fry sized sticks. Add sticks to a large bowl or ziploc baggie with some cooking spray, cracked black pepper and about 1 tablespoon of smoked paprika. Shake around until fries are evenly coated.

    Place fries in a single layer, not touching each other on a cooling rack placed inside a cooking sheet–having airflow all around makes them crispier. Bake fries at 475 degrees for 30 minutes or until they’re crispy.

    Remove from oven and toss in a mixture of 1 tablespoon brown sugar, 1/2 teaspoon salt, 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika. If you like a little more heat, add a pinch of cayenne to this mixture as well.

    Consume while hot.


  • Kammy

    Wondering what to do with all that left over fresh ginger? Scrub the outside, throw it in a freezer bag and freeze it. Each time you need it, pop it out of the freezer and grate some in your recipe.

  • Kallah Maguire

    I can’t wait to check out all of the recipes!!