If I could have only 5 I would take herbes de Provence, Basil, Oregano, thyme and sage. This is because I do a lot of soups and sauces. If I were to do a lot of baking then a good vanilla and a good cinnamon as well.
hey -- herbes de Provence is cheating! :wink:
For dried herbs/spices I mostly use coriander, cumin, oregano, thyme, and cayenne. I also use fresh basil, rosemary, thyme, chives, mint, and parsley (I grow them outside in the summer and under a grow light in the winter).