These surprisingly simple (but definitely delicious) dishes put the humble seasonings into the spotlight.

We love wild sumac and garam masala as much as the next chef, but there’s something about mastering the two pillars of seasoning—salt and pepper—that makes you feel like a pro. Used lightly, they add the perfect finish to a dish; used liberally they make for an arresting presentation. Dust off the shaker and polish up the grinder: salt and pepper are here.

4 Salt-and-Pepper Recipes We Love

calamari1. Salt and Pepper Buttermilk Calamari

prime-rib 2. Pepper-Crusted Prime Rib with Green Peppercorn Cream

veg 3. Salt-Baked Winter Vegetables 

caramels4. Salted, Peppered Caramels