We have long been followers of Alton Brown and his “Good Eats” program on the Food Network. Once we left behind the carbs and starches, it became increasingly difficult to follow Alton’s recipes. However his philosophy remains integral to our approach to home cooking. One point of his philosophy is “no uni-taskers!” What this means is that there should be no tool, equipment, or ingredient that is good for only one thing. Not only does this help avoid clutter in the kitchen, it keeps the mind dancing; to appreciate and use or reuse things instead of buying a gadget or mix that serves a single purpose.
With that in multipurpose in mind, I would like to share a favorite recipe for seasoning meat…any kind of meat…almost any ethnic cuisine can benefit from the savory sweetness this blend provides. I also share a couple of variations on the theme in order to highlight specific cuisine, or to tone down the spiciness. We use the Meat Medley as dry rub marinade: sometimes just a quick pre-grill seasoning, sometimes overnite marinading for jerky or slow roasts. It isgreat for seasoning meatballs, beef jerky, pork chops, pulled pork, salmon, seafood stew, grilled or roasted chicken, zuccini slices, anything that is good grilled is better with Meat Medley.
The quantities listed below not only taste great, but the proportions allows them to fit just right into the bowl of my coffee/spice grinder.
You should mnote that the medley does not include salt. I recommend using sea salt before the medley. I do not add it to the medley because I use the medley for alot of different cuts and cooking styles. For example i like to brine my pork chops and chicken before grilling and i foundthat having salt in the medley made things too salty tasting.
As with all of my recipes, the ingredients are GAPS/SCD/Paleo/Primal compliant and contain only real ingredients with no added sugar, gluten, or nitrates.
1T Whole fennel seed
1T Whole mustard seed
1T Whole cumin seed
1T Whole corriander seed
1T Black peppercorns
1.5t Cayenne pepper
1T Dried basil
1T Dried oregano
2t Dried thyme
Mortar and pestle, coffee/spice grinder, stainless steel skillet
Method 1( low tech ):
add the seeds and peppercorns to a mortar and pestle them until a fine powederlike consistency. Add in the cayenne pepper, paprika, and dried herbs. Mix with a fork. Using a funnel, pour the mix into a spice jar with a shaker top. Simply shake the mix on your meat or veges and grill (note that some olive oil will help the medley adhere to veges and lean cuts of meat)
Method 2 (high tech, max flavor):
heat a small stainless steel pan over medium heat. Add the seeds and peppercorns and move the pan around to heat the seeds and peppercorns until aromatic but not burnt. Remove from heat and allow seeds to cool on a ceramic plate or dish. Carefully transfer the seeds and peppercorns into the spice grinder and pulverize until powder like. Be careful removing the lid, steam inside the seeds may aerate when you open the grinder. Add in the herbs, cayenne, and paprika and pulse afew times to mix. This variation is especially good in meatballs, on lean cuts of beef, as a seasoning for beef jerky, or as a marinade for chicken (brine chicken first, then pat dry and coat with medley, grill on medium heat or around 300f until done).