Dips and Sauces
By Nmami Agarwal
Dips and sauces – the evergreen condiment can be combined with various foods stocked in the pantry. So, why not stock up your pantry with these food enhancers listed below? Here they are:
Harissa paste is a hot chili pepper paste in which the main ingredients are roasted red pepper, serrano pepper, baklouti pepper, and other hot chili peppers including spices and herbs like garlic paste, saffron, coriander seed, rose, or caraway and little olive oil for preservation. If you’re searching for the perfect addition of flavours to your roasted vegetables or a nice topping to give a lip-smacking twist, then harissa is the option to choose.
Harissa’s heat is compatible to pair up with sweet vegetables like carrots, squash, fennel; you can also try mixing it in a basic tomato sauce. If spiciness is what you are fond of, then give a spicy kick to your salad by whisking harissa paste into a lemony dressing. It tastes even more delicious when tossed with raw julienned carrots, rubbed on chicken, spread over wraps and sandwiches, added to tacos or swirled in soup. Either add a thin layer of olive oil on the top of harissa or freeze a small portion of it to use as per your need.
Hummus is a Levantine dip/spread made from chickpeas and other beans blended along with tahini, lemon juice, olive oil, garlic and salt. Its consistency is almost like an unfrozen ice-cream. If you’ve got to add it in your pantry, then make a way to the grocery store. Make hummus and quinoa scrambled eggs, avocado and hummus toast, hummus mashed potatoes, English muffins with hummus, salad with hummus dressing. Use it instead of mayo or mustard or just spread it over your sandwich or enjoy pita chips with it.
Hummus might last just for a week when kept in the refrigerator. And hummus can also be kept in the freezer for a long time, but its flavour and consistency is unlike fresh hummus.
Jam is typically prepared from fruits like strawberry, apricots, tomatoes and squash with pectin and citrus. It has jelly-like consistency but with a sprinkling of fruit chunks which makes it perfect for kids to have on their breakfast plate and lunch box. Fill pastries, cupcakes, muffins and cookies or top your sandwich, pancakes, cakes or cheesecake with it. Swirl it in the yogurt for a flavourful treat and oatmeal or else make stuffed French toast by spreading jam in-between it. Jam last for few months when stored in the refrigerator.
Pesto- A versatile Italian sauce, traditionally made from crushed garlic, pine nuts, basil leaves, pecorino sardo (cheese made from sheep’s milk), coarse salt, lemon juice and parmesan cheese blended with olive oil. Few variations of pesto are as follows:
Use it simply in pasta sauces, in grilled/roasted vegetables, as a spread on homemade personalized pizza, or have it with eggs. Drizzle pesto over your favourite breakfast and give a touch of herbs to add little more nutrients to the plate. Mix pesto and mayonnaise together and layer it on flatbread or sandwich bread. You can also mix pesto with cream cheese and have it as schmear with bagels. Use a dab of pesto, instead of butter to garnish your vegetables. Pesto gives a perfect match with grilled steak, chicken, pork chops and fish as well. So, now you don’t have to marinate or spice up your meat all the time.
Homemade pesto is best to use up to a week when stored in the refrigerator and for several months in the freezer.
Salsa is also known as ‘salsa fresca’ which is among the sauces from Mexican cuisine. Salsa is particularly used as dips which are often tomato-based including ingredients such as herbs, onions and chilies. Its taste is typically piquant, varying from mild to extremely hot. Other variations can be made in salsa by including mango, tomatillo, mango, and zucchini if you want.
If you wish then you can also use it as a great topping for egg skillets, homemade nachos and grain bowls. Canning roasted tomato version of salsa during the summer preserves it and the preparation can be used through the winters. Homemade salsa will be best to use around 5 days whereas, store-bought salsas can last for a couple of weeks or so.
Hope you like to load your pantry shelves from these sauces to make your breakfast, lunch, evening snack or dinner little more interesting. And do not forget to comment down below your favourite sauce you wish to add in your pantry and in this list as well.
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