Fresh Herbs Guide – what goes well with what?

Fresh Herbs Guide – what goes well with whatFresh living herbs can transform a good dish into an amazing one. They can add an incredible rich aroma, more flavour and that something special, which can elevate your dish to the next level.

By all means, I am not suggesting ditching dry herbs all together but having a fresh living herb garden is really something every cook should think about… yes, I know that not everyone has a garden or space for it but let’s be honest how much space do herbs really need? All that is required is some free window sill space, a few pots and some soil… and if this is still way too much hassle for you, why don’t you look into a complete herb set which can be planted in the box it came in.

We love fresh herbs and there is always something green growing on my kitchen window sill. A few basil leaves added into a simple tomato sauce can make all the difference… or a few mint leaves chopped and mix with your potato salad… sometimes fresh herbs is all you need to create a culinary masterpiece.

If you are new to fresh herbs I’ve put together a simple guide as to which herbs go well with what.

Basil pairs well with: tomatoes, garlic, fruit, peas, aubergines, green salad, squash, eggs, cheese, potatoes, pasta

Bay leaf pairs well with: all kind of soups and stews, sauces and marinades which need to rest for a while

Coriander pairs well with: curry, BBQ, garlic, lemon, green salad

Dill pairs well with: fish, potatoes, fish, beets, pickles, lemon

Marjoram pairs well with: cheese, eggs, basil, garlic, corn, meat

Mint pairs well with: jellies, fruit juices, candies, frosting, cakes, pies, pork, potatoes, peas and chocolate

Oregano pairs well with: tomato, pasta sauces, basil, onion

Parsley pairs well with: all kind of soups and stews, green salad, eggs, cheese

Rosemary pairs well with: lamb, pork, chicken, carrot, potatoes, garlic and tomato

Thyme pairs well with: soups, pasta sauces, potato, rice, tomato, potatoes

The list goes on and on, the more you learn the more there is to discover, it is a journey and one I implore you to start if you have even the slightest inclination in the kitchen.

If you like my herb pairing you might want to check the full flavour profiles post.

Do you use fresh living herbs in your cooking?

What is your all-time favourite use of fresh herbs?

*Post written for Spalding Bulb blogger herb challenge.

Flavour profiles – what goes well with what?

Flavour profiles – what goes well with what?

After my successful Chocolate and Orange Drizzle Cake experiment I have developed a taste for more… as in more experimentation with different flavours.

Right now I have 6 ripe kiwi fruits which I would love to turn into a cake.

I was just browsing the net in search of something to complement the kiwi flavour when I stumbled upon Nouveau Raw website and their fantastic Flavour profiles that pair well in recipes article.

Experiments in the kitchen are fun but it is nice to have something to check if your picked flavours will pair well.

Nouveau Raw created this awesome chart which I will shamelessly re-blog here for you.

  • Allspice pairs well with: apples, beets, cabbage, caramel, cardamom, cinnamon, cloves, coriander, ginger, juniper, mace, mustard, nuts, nutmeg, onions, pears,  pumpkin, root vegetables, yams.
  • Almond pairs well with: apple, apricot, banana, caramel, cherry, coffee, fig, honey, orange, peach, pear, plum
  • Anice pairs well with:  apples, beets, caramel, carrots, chocolate, citrus, cinnamon, coconut, coriander, cranberry, fennel, figs, fish,  garlic, peaches, pomegranates,  pumpkin
  • Apple pairs well with: caramel, cardamom, chestnut, cinnamon, cranberry, currant, ginger, hazelnut, mango, maple, rosemary, walnut
  • Apricot pairs well with: almond, black pepper, caramel, cardamom, ginger, hazelnut, honey, orange, peach, vanilla, plum
  • Asian Pear pairs well with: almond, apple, black pepper, cinnamon, ginger, honey, macadamia, nutmeg, raisin, vanilla
  • Banana pairs well with: caramel, cherry, chocolate, cinnamon, coffee, ginger, hazelnut, honey, mango, molasses, papaya
  • Basil pairs well with: capers, chives, cilantro, garlic, marjoram, oregano, mint, onion, parsley, rosemary, thyme,  artichokes, eggplant, green vegetables, mushrooms, olives, Sweet Basil is the best basil for pesto and tomato salads.
  • Bay leaf pairs well with: artichokes, beans, garlic, grains, juniper, lentils, marjoram, mushrooms, nuts, oregano, parsley, potatoes, sage, savory, thyme and tomatoes
  • Beets pair well with: Apples, basil, beef, butter, cabbage, caraway seeds, carrots, cheese, chives, dill, hard-boiled eggs, garlic, honey, horseradish, lemon, mint, mustard, olive oil, onions, orange, pepper, pistachios, salt
  • Blackberry pairs well with: apricot, black pepper, cinnamon, citrus, hazelnut, lemon, other berries, peach, plum
  • Blood Orange pairs well with: almond, cardamom, chocolate, cinnamon, clove, fig, ginger, honey, other citrus
  • Blueberry pairs well with: other berries, cardamom, mango, lemon, hazelnut, ginger, fig, lavender, other citrus
  • Butternut Squash pairs well with: sage and rosemary, either of which can be used fresh or in dried form.  The warm “pie spices” of nutmeg and ginger are a good match for butternut squash, both underlining and balancing its sweetness. For a savory approach, consider cumin.  Chilies provide sweet-and-spicy flavor combination.  The naturally sweet taste of butternut squash is enhanced when paired with fruit, such as fresh and dried apples, fresh pear, orange juice and dried cranberries.
  • Caraway pairs well with: apples, beets, broccoli, cabbage, pears, sauerkraut, allspice, almonds, cardamom, chili, cinnamon, coriander,  dill,  fennel seed, juniper berry, onion, mushrooms, garlic, oregano, parsley, thyme.
  • Cardamom pairs well with:  apples, bananas, beans, caramel,  citrus fruit, coconut, ice creams, nuts, mango, allspice, almond, cardamom, chili, cinnamon, clove, coriander, cumin, curry, dates, fennel seed, ginger, mustard, paprika, pears, pepper, star anise, turmeric, saffron
  • Carrot pairs well with: anise, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, walnut
  • Celery pairs well with: cabbage, cilantro, cucumber, cumin, garlic, ginger, mustard, onion, parsley, pepper, rosemary, sage, tomatoes, thyme
  • Celery Seed pairs well with: tomatoes, allspice, black pepper, caraway, chili, cinnamon coriander, cumin, fennel seed, ginger, sage, turmeric
  • Cherry pairs well with: apricot, black pepper, chocolate, citrus, nectarine, peach, plum,  vanilla
  • Chestnut pairs well with: apple, caramel, chocolate, coffee, pear, vanilla
  • Chives pair well with: asparagus, basil, cheese, cilantro, dill, fennel, green vegetables, horseradish, mushrooms, olives, paprika, pasta, parsley, tarragon
  • Chocolate pairs well with: oranges, nuts, Allspice, almond, aniseed, cinnamon, clove, curry leaf, fennel seed, garlic, ginger, lemongrass, mint, nutmeg, onion, vanilla
  • Cilantro (coriander) pairs well with: apples, apricot, avocados, berries, cherries, citrus, coconut, nectarine, peach, plum, tropical fruit, Allspice, Cardamom, clove, cumin, curry, dates, fennel seed, garlic, ginger,  mint, sun-dried tomato, turmeric, tomatoes.
  • Cinnamon pairs well with:  allspice, apples, bananas, cantaloupe, caraway, cardamom, clove, cacao, chilies, caramel, cauliflower, chocolate, corn, curries,  coffee, coriander, cranberry, cumin, dates, figs, ginger, mint, nutmeg,  grapes, oranges, peaches, pears, winter squash, star anise, sun-dried tomatoes, tamarind, turmeric, vanilla
  • Chervil  pairs well with: artichokes, asparagus, carrots, chives, citrus, grains, green beans, leafy vegetables, mushrooms, nuts, onions, parsley, tarragon, thyme,and  vinegar
  • Clove pairs well with: allspice, apples, beets, bay leaf, cakes, cardamom, cacao, carrots, chocolate, citrus, coriander, cumin, curry, fennel, ginger, mace, nutmeg, orange, peaches, pineapple, pumpkin, red cabbage,  star anise, tamarind, turmeric,vanilla
  • Coconut pairs well with: Allspice, banana, basil, black pepper, Brazil nut, caramel, chocolate, citrus,  cumin, curry leaf, garlic, ginger, guava, lemongrass, passionfruit, pineapple, sun-dried, tomato, turmeric, vanilla
  • Coriander pairs well with: allspice, apples, bananas, beans, chili, cilantro, cinnamon, citrus, cloves, cumin, curry, fennel, fish, garlic, ginger, mace, mint, mushrooms, nutmeg, onion, parsley,
  • Cranberry pairs well with: apple, chocolate, cinnamon, citrus, mango, mint, pear
  • Cumin pairs well with: allspice, anise, avocados, bay leaf, beans, cabbage, cardamom,  cilantro, cinnamon, citrus, coconut, coriander, cucumber, curry, fennel, fenugreek, garlic, ginger,  lentils, mace, onion, nutmeg, parsley, tomatoes
  • Currants, Black and Red, pairs well with: cassis, chocolate, citrus
  • Dill pairs well with: anise, basil, cabbage, capers, caraway, carrots, chives, coriander, cucumbers, cumin,  fennel, garlic, ginger, horseradish, mint, mustard, oregano, onion, paprika, parsley
  • Elderberry pairs well with: apricot, fig, honey, lemon, mandarin, other berries, peach, plum
  • Fennel pairs well with: anise, artichokes, basil, beans, cabbage, cheese, cilantro, cinnamon, cucumber, cumin, dill, eggplant, fenugreek, figs, garlic, lemon balm, lentils, mint, olives, onion, oregano, parsley, pork, thyme, tomatoes
  • Fig pairs well with: almond, black pepper, cinnamon, citrus, hazelnut, pear, vanilla
  • Garlic pairs well with: basil, caraway, chili, coriander, cumin, curry leaf, marjoram, mint, mustard seed, oregano, parsley, rosemary, sun-dried tomato, thyme
  • Ginger pairs well with: allspice, almond, anise, apple, apricot, banana,basil, berries, Brazil nut, caramel, carrots, chives, chocolate, cilantro, cinnamon, citrus,cloves, coconut, coriander, cranberry, cumin, curry, dates, fennel, grape, hazelnut, passion fruit, peach, pear, pineapple, plum,  nutmeg, onion, peaches, pears, pepper, pumpkin, raisins, turmeric, vanilla
  • Gooseberry pairs well with: citrus, hazelnut, honey, other berries, white chocolate
  • Grape pairs well with: chocolate, citrus, fig, honey, ginger, raisin
  • Grapefruit pairs well with: basil, black pepper, caramel, citrus, mint, rosemary, thyme, tropical fruit, vanilla
  • Guava pairs well with: citrus, lime, coconut, huckleberry, kaffir leaf, pineapple, strawberry, tropical fruit
  • Hazelnut pairs well with: apple, apricot, banana, berries, caramel, cherry, chocolate, citrus, fig, mandarin, peach, pear, plum
  • Jicama pairs well with: acidic fruits and juices such as lime, lemon and orange juice.  Red pepper and hot pepper sauce,  avocado, cilantro, cucumber and grapefruit.
  • Kaffir Leaf pairs well with: banana, citrus, coconut, lemongrass, tropical fruit, watermelon
  • Kiwi pairs well with: apple, banana, berries, cherry, citrus, coconut, mango, tropical fruit
  • Kumquat pairs well with: berries, cherry, chocolate, cinnamon, coffee, persimmon, plum
  • Lavender pairs well with: chocolate, lemon, blueberries, vanilla, thyme
  • Lemon pairs well with: apricot, berries, black pepper, cardamom, cherry, citrus, ginger, nectarine, peach, plum, prickly pear, tropical fruit
  • Lemongrass pairs well with: cherry, berries, citrus, coconut, ginger, guava, kaffir leaf, coconut, tropical fruit, vanilla
  • Lime pairs well with: apple, berries, cherry, ginger, papaya, plum, strawberry, tropical fruit
  • Lychee pairs well with: citrus, ginger, gooseberry, tropical fruit, vanilla
  • Mace pairs well with: allspice, asparagus, beans, cabbage, carrots, cheese, cinnamon, cloves, coffee, cranberries, cumin, ginger, nutmeg, peaches, pumpkin, potatoes, vanilla,
  • Mandarin pairs well with: cardamom, cherry, chocolate, cinnamon, coffee, fig, ginger, nutmeg, tropical fruits, vanilla, star anise
  • Mango pairs well with: apple, banana, berries, caramel, citrus, coconut, melon, tropical fruits, vanilla, cinnamon
  • Marjoram pairs well with: artichokes, basil, cinnamon, cumin, eggplant, fennel, garlic, mushrooms, onion, oregano, parsley,  thyme
  • Melon pairs well with: berries, citrus, lemongrass, lemon verbena
  • Nutmeg pairs well with: allspice, asparagus, cabbage, cardamom, carrots, cinnamon, cloves, coffee, coriander, cranberries, cumin, ginger,  mace, onion, peaches, pumpkin, thyme, vanilla
  • Orange pairs well with: almonds, basil, berries, brandy, cherry, chocolate, cilantro, cinnamon, coffee, cranberry, fig, ginger, grape, hazelnut, mint, nutmeg, persimmon, pineapple, vanilla
  • Oregano pairs well with: basil, cinnamon, cumin, eggplant, fennel, garlic, marjoram, mushrooms, onion, parsley, thyme, tomatoes
  • Paprika pairs well with: allspice, caraway, cardamom,  garlic, ginger, legumes, oregano, parsley,  rosemary, saffron, thyme, turmeric, vegetables
  • Papaya pairs well with: citrus, black pepper, lime, mango, tropical fruit
  • Parsley pairs well with: basil, bay leaf, chives, dill,  garlic, marjoram, mushrooms, grains, onion, oregano,thyme, tomatoes
  • Pear pairs well with: almond, apple, caramel, chestnut, chocolate, cinnamon, citrus, ginger, hazelnut, vanilla, walnut
  • Persimmon pairs well with: apple, black pepper, cinnamon, citrus, kumquat, pear
  • Pineapple pairs well with: basil, caramel, cilantro, coconut, macadamia, rosemary, tropical fruit
  • Plum pairs well with: almond, cinnamon, citrus, chestnut, black pepper, hazelnut, honey, vanilla
  • Pomegranate pairs well with: apple, citrus, cucumber, mint, tropical fruit
  • Prickly Pear pairs well with: citrus, lime, tomatillo, tropical fruit
  • Raspberry pairs well with: apricot, cinnamon, citrus, ginger, lemon, nectarine, other berries, peach, plum, rhubarb, thyme, vanilla
  • Rose water pairs well with: saffron, cardamom,jasmine, almonds, pistachios and coconuts.
  • Rosemary pairs well with:  apples, asparagus, basil, citrus, cranberry, fennel, garlic, grains, mushrooms, marjoram, onion, oregano, parsley, thyme, tomatoes
  • Rhubarb pairs well with: apple, apricot, berries, black pepper, citrus, ginger, nectarine, peach, plum, strawberry
  • Sage pears well with: apples, bay leaf,  capers, caraway, celery, citrus,  garlic, ginger, marjoram, onions, paprika, parsley, rosemary, thyme, tomatoes
  • Sesame pairs well with: citrus,  garlic, ginger, thyme
  • Sorrel pairs well with: chives, beans, leafy greens, oregano, parsley, thyme, and squash
  • Strawberry pairs well with: apple, black pepper, chocolate, citrus, coriander, mint, rhubarb, vanilla
  • Thyme pairs well with: bananas, basil, bay leaf, beans, carrots, citrus, dill, garlic, mint, mushrooms, onion, oregano, parsley, sage
  • Tomatillo pairs well with: berries, citrus, mango, prickly pear, tropical fruit
  • Walnut pairs well with: apple, apricot, banana, caramel, chocolate, cinnamon, nectarine, peach, pear, plum, rum

I hope you will find this chart as useful as I am.

Experiments in the kitchen are fun but it is nice to have something to check if your picked flavours will pair well.  Nouveau Raw created this awesome chart which I will shamelessly re-blog here for you.