Here's a spice mix with oregano that can liven up meats and vegetables

While many people think of pizza when they think of oregano, this wonderful herb can add an aromatic flavour to many different dishes, especially those of the Mediterranean cuisine.Known botanically as Origanum vulgare, it is called wild marjoram in many parts of Europe since it is closely related to the herb that we know as sweet marjoram. Its name is derived from the Greek words oros (mountain) and ganos (joy), since not only was it a symbol of happiness, but it made the hillsides on which it grew look beautiful as well.

Oregano is native to northern Europe, although it grows in many regions of the world.

Whenever possible, choose fresh oregano over the dried form as it is superior in flavour. The leaves of fresh oregano should be vibrant green in colour, while the stems should be firm. They should be free from darks spots or yellowing.

Fresh oregano should be stored in the refrigerator, wrapped in a slightly damp paper towel. It may also be frozen, either whole or chopped, in airtight containers. Alternatively, you can freeze the oregano in ice cube trays covered with either water or stock that can be added when preparing soups or stews. Dried oregano should be kept in a tightly sealed glass container in a cool, dark and dry place where it will keep fresh for about six months.

Oregano is an excellent source of vitamin K, iron, manganese, calcium, magnesium, vitamin A and vitamin C and dietary fibre.

Now for a recipe.

Creole spice mix

Ingredients

Oregano: 20 gm

Paprika: 60 gm

Garlic powder: 40 gm

Black pepper: 10 gm

Onion powder: 10 gm

Cayenne powder: 10-15 gm

Thyme: 10 gm

Method: Combine paprika, garlic powder, black pepper, onion powder, cayenne, oregano and thyme in a blender. Shake until well-combined. Seal tightly and store in a dark cabinet away from heat and light. Use Creole spice mix within six months.

Shake container before each use to be sure the mix is blended well.

Note: Good on meats, vegetables and seafood.

Chef de Partie

Taj Connemara

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