(Image courtesy Mennonite Girls Can Cook)
As I mentioned on my list of presents I’m making for Christmas, I am giving some herb and spice mixes this year. These are simple gifts that are especially perfect for the cook in the family. And herb/spice mixes are easy and cheap to make, especially if you have a garden. It’s just a matter of mixing the spices, putting them in decorative jars, and labeling them.
Among the mixes I’m giving this year is a poultry rub. Here is a per-serving recipe. If you want to fill a jar, you can adjust by making the measurement into parts, tablespoons instead of teaspoons or cups instead of teaspoons, depending on how much you want.
Sage and Lemon Poultry Mix
1 tsp crumbled sage
1 tsp garlic powder
3/4 tsp salt, preferably kosher or sea salt
1/2 tsp black pepper
1/2 tsp lemon zest
Remove the zest of the lemon with a grater or a zester. Spread the zest out on a plate and put under a paper towel. Let it sit a day or two in a cool dry place until the zest dries out. You don’t want to put moist zest in the mix, or the salt and powder will cling to it and it will clump.
Now, put all the seasonings, including the zest, in a bowl. Mix together.
Taste the seasoning. If it doesn’t seem balanced, adjust with more salt/garlic powder/pepper.
Put the seasoning in an air-tight jar and label accordingly.
A note on salt: Some people don’t put salt in herb mixes. I do because I feel that you should be able to shake it right out onto the meat and cook it. You can always skip the salt if you want.
The cost of this present is easily under $1. Salt, pepper, and garlic powder are among the cheapest things in the grocery store, especially if you buy in bulk. The sage and lemon are free from my garden. I am either re-using jars or using ones I picked up from thrift stores. All in all, a great gift for almost nothing, and something the recipients will enjoy.
Here are some other seasoning mixes that look good:
* Herb spice rub
* My own Taco Seasoning
* Recreate Emeril’s Bayou Blast Seasoning Mix
* Garden Herb Mix and Cajun Spice Mix, pictured above.
* This Italian Herb Mix looks good, although I would add salt.
* Herbs de Provence, for a French touch. Some people also add dried lavender to the mix. I haven’t tried it that way, but it sounds intriguing.