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Seasonings

65 Helpful Cooking Tips

How to Make Homemade Seasoned Rice Vinegar
Can you use unseasoned rice vinegar in a recipe that calls for seasoned rice vinegar?
Published: May 2020
Is Double Concentrated Tomato Paste Different from Regular Tomato Paste?
Is Double Concentrated Tomato Paste Different from Regular Tomato Paste?
If a tube of tomato pasta says that it is “double concentrated” should you only use half the amount called for in recipes?
Published: May 2020
What is "Dark" Chinese Soy Sauce?
What is "Dark" Chinese Soy Sauce?
And how should you use it? 
Published: February 2020
The Difference Between Spearmint and Peppermint
The Difference Between Spearmint and Peppermint
It's in the looks and the flavor.
Published: February 2020
How to Store Whole Nutmeg
Fresh nutmeg tastes much livelier than the preground jarred stuff. How should you store it?
Published: December 2018
How to Measure Grated Citrus Zest
When measuring grated citrus zest, should you pack it into a measuring spoon or keep it loose?
Published: October 2018
Garlic Powder vs. Granulated Garlic
Granulated garlic and garlic powder can be used interchangeably in most recipes; we tend to favor granulated garlic in our recipes because it's easier to work w…
Published: August 2018
Quick Visual Guide to 5 Mustards
Get to know your favorite zippy condiment.
Published: August 2018
What is Smoked Salt?
You’ve likely seen this available in your local grocery store. What is it, and how do you use it?
Published: June 2018
What is Kosher Salt?
What exactly is kosher salt, and why is it called for in some of your recipes?
Published: April 2017
Heating Things Up
Does hot salsa lose some of its spiciness when refrigerated?
Published: February 2017
Louisiana Flavors
The roots of Louisiana cuisine reach deep into the soil of a dazzling array of cultures. There’s Cajun cooking, a rustic, hearty, game-heavy cuisine that has …
Published: February 2017
Mustard Seeds
Can brown and yellow mustard seeds be used interchangeably in recipes?
Published: August 2016
Ground Bay Leaves
Why do recipes usually call for whole bay leaves and not ground?
Published: April 2016
Can Sweet Hungarian and Spanish Paprikas be Used Interchangeably?
What is the difference between sweet Hungarian paprika and Spanish paprika? Can they be used interchangeably?
Published: October 2014
Vinegars
Vinegars
More than just the yin to oil’s yang in salad dressing, vinegar can help shape a perfect poached egg and save many a dish from terminal blandness.
Published: February 2014
Umami Powerhouses
Umami, a quality of meaty savoriness that brings depth to many dishes, is widely considered the fifth taste. These 12 umami-enhancing ingredients boost the flav…
Published: December 2013
Salts and Peppers
Not all salts and peppers are created equal. Here are 12 we like to cook with.
Published: October 2013
Explaining Types of Mustard: Dijon, Yellow, Spicy Brown, Whole-Grain
Grocery stores are stocking more and more varieties of mustard these days. How many should grace your kitchen?
Published: August 2013
Sprinkling Minced Garlic with Salt
Chefs on TV often sprinkle salt on garlic when they chop it. Why?
Published: August 2013
Herb and Spice Blends
Most cuisines around the world, including our own, have characteristic spice mixes. Here’s a look at 12 spice blends, old and new, home-grown and foreign.
Published: February 2013
Seeds
You may think seeds belong in the garden, but one look around a well-stocked kitchen proves otherwise.
Published: April 2012
Seasoning Cooking Water with Garlic
Will putting garlic in the cooking water give me more garlic flavor?
Published: April 2012
Different Kinds of Honey
Supermarkets carry all kinds of honey (clover, buckwheat, tupelo, etc.). Some are quite expensive. What’s the difference? 
Published: December 2011
Baking Spices
To make the most of your baking spices, follow our tips: Preground spices are convenient, but their flavors fade fast. 
Published: October 2011
Removing Garlic Odor
We don’t have a cure for removing garlic odor from your hands, but these three options can help.
Published: February 2011
Substutions for Mace
If you don't have any mace on hand, will nutmeg work instead?
Published: October 2010
Chopping and Using Fresh Basil
When it comes to chopping basil, it pays to wait until the last minute.
Published: June 2010
Tearing vs. Chopping Herbs
Why do some recipes recommend tearing fresh herbs instead of chopping them?
Published: April 2010
Different Types of Salt
Can you tell the difference between table salt, sea salt, and kosher salt in recipes? When should you use each?
Published: April 2010
Freezing Garlic Cloves
If you don't use whole, peeled garlic cloves fast enough, can they be frozen?
Published: April 2010
Madras Curry Powder
What is Madras curry—and can you use it in place of regular curry powder?
Published: February 2010
“Blooming” Spices
What does it mean to “bloom” spices and what is the benefit?
Published: February 2010
Varieties of Dried Sage
Markets sell several types of dried sage. Are they interchangeable?
Published: October 2009
Dried Mexican Oregano
Do you really need to keep two types of oregano on hand?
Published: August 2009
Dill Seed or Weed?
When the flavor of fresh dill failed to assert itself, we headed to the spice aisle for extra dill flavor.
Published: June 2009