Spices and Their Use
Spice List In Alphabetical Order
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Marjoram, Ground, and uses – It has sweet pine and citrus flavors. Mix in ground beef for meat loaf or hamburgers and gravies. Add to barbecue sauce, spaghetti sauce and pizza sauce, in stuffing for poultry, pork and veal. Marjoram Leaves - Add to spaghetti sauce, pizzas, lasagna, barbecue sauces, poultry, beef, pork, salad dressing, stewed tomatoes and green beans.
Masala, Tikka (CTM) and uses - Has both a hot and sour taste. Use in grilling. Mix it in sour cream to make dip and in a yogurt marinade for chicken. Chicken Tikka masala is one of the most popular dishes in Indian restaurants in this country. A Simple Direction to use the Tikka Spice Blend. Add the spice in a pan. Once the pan is hot add oil and sauté onions until onions are translucent or brown as per your desire. Add the spice mixture along with fresh plump roma diced tomatoes. After the flavors are all mixed together with the help of the tomato juice add the meats or vegetables of your choice.
Mint Leaves and uses - Commercially prepared mint oil or extract are better than anything you can concoct at home from the fresh herb. For most culinary purposes, garden peppermint is a bit strong. If you use them, harvest only the young leaves. The older leaves and the stems tend to be bitter. Spearmint and curly mint are more versatile for culinary uses. Milder than peppermint, they enhance all sorts of meat, fish, or vegetable dishes. All garden mints are best used fresh and should be stored only briefly, in plastic bags in the refrigerator. They may be frozen. Dried leaves should be kept in an airtight container in a cool, dark place. Mint is used in Afghanistan, Egyptian, Indian, and Mid-Eastern cuisine and spice blends such as chat masola, mint sauce, and green Thai curry.
Moroccan Spice and uses - Moroccan cuisine spices are used extensively in Moroccan food. Although spices have been imported to Morocco for thousands of years, many ingredients, like saffron from Tiliouine, mint and olives from Meknes, and oranges and lemons from Fez, are homegrown. Common spices include karfa (cinnamon), kamoun (cumin), kharkoum (turmeric), skinjbir (ginger), libzar (pepper), tahmira (paprika), anise seed, sesame seeds, qesbour (coriander), and zaafran beldi (saffron). Common herbs include mint and 'maadnous'(parsley.)
Used in common meats include mutton and lamb, beef, chicken, camel, rabbit and seafood, which serve as a base for Moroccan cuisine.
Mustard, Powder and uses - Add to baked beans, egg yolks for stuffed eggs, cheese soufflé, cheese spreads, sauces. Use in French dressing, mayonnaise, barbecue sauces, chicken curry, potato salad, Italian dressing, egg salad, deviled crab or deviled ham, crab imperial, shrimp salad, meat loaf and creamed onions, ham glaze, macaroni salad and seafood crepes, Chinese hot mustard for egg rolls or shrimp. Mustard is a condiment made from the seeds of a mustard plant. Whole, ground, cracked or bruised mustard seeds are mixed with water, salt, lemon juice, mayonnaise or other liquids, and sometimes other flavorings and spices, to create a paste or sauce ranging in color from bright-yellow to dark-brown. English Mustard is among the strongest, made from only mustard flour, water, salt and, sometimes, lemon juice but not with vinegar. French Mustard or Moutarde de Dijon, has added vinegar, and is milder. German Mustard or Senf is milder still. Homemade mustards are often far hotter and more intensely flavored than commercial preparations. Strong mustard can cause the eyes to water, sting the palate, and inflame the nasal passages and throat. Mustard can also cause allergic reactions. Commonly paired with meats and cheeses, mustard is also a popular addition to sandwiches, hamburgers, and hot dogs. It is also used as an ingredient in many dressings, glazes, sauces, soups, and marinades; as a cream or a seed, mustard is used in the cuisine of India, the Mediterranean, the Caribbean, northern Europe, the British Isles, the Balkan States, Asia, North America, and Africa, making it one of the most popular and widely used spices and condiments in the world.
Nutmeg and Mace uses – Both have similar sensory qualities, with nutmeg having a slightly sweeter and mace a more delicate flavor. Mace is often preferred in light dishes for the bright orange, saffron-like hue it imparts. Nutmeg is used for flavoring many dishes, usually in ground or grated form, and is best-grated fresh in a nutmeg grater. In Penang cuisine, dried, shredded nutmeg rind with sugar coating is used as toppings on the uniquely Penang ais kacang. Nutmeg rind is also blended (creating a fresh, green, tangy taste and white color juice) or boiled (resulting in a much sweeter and brown juice) to make iced nutmeg juice or, as it is called in Penang Hokkien, lau hau peng. In Indian cuisine, nutmeg is used in many sweet as well as savory dishes (predominantly in Mughlai cuisine). It is known as jaiphal in most parts of India. In Middle Eastern cuisine, ground nutmeg is often used as a spice for savory dishes. In Arabic, nutmeg is called jawzat at-tiyb. In originally European cuisine, nutmeg and mace are used especially in potato dishes and in processed meat products; they are also used in soups, sauces, and baked goods. In Dutch cuisine, nutmeg is added to vegetables such as Brussels sprouts, cauliflower, and string beans. Nutmeg is a traditional ingredient in mulled cider, mulled wine, and eggnog. In the Caribbean, nutmeg is often used in drinks such as the Bushwacker, Painkiller, and Barbados rum punch. Typically, it is just a sprinkle on the top of the drink.
Onion Powder and uses - Use for soup, vegetables, chowders, stews, and casseroles, salads, potato, pasta, chicken, tuna, ham, beef, pork, chicken, fish, veal, dips, salads, dressings, cheese sauce, egg dishes. Onion (Flakes, Powder, Salt) - Onions are an important flavoring in almost every country in the world. When combined with other ingredients, onion flavor is rarely overwhelming or assertive. Onions are pungent when raw and become sweet in flavor when cooked.
Oregano and use - Use on tomato, eggplant and zucchini dishes. Add to spaghetti, pizza, and barbecue sauces, chicken, beef, pork, lamb, fish and stew. Oregano Leaves - Sprinkle over pizza, add to spaghetti sauce, chicken, fish, tomatoes, potatoes, rice, sautéed zucchini, squash, eggplant, mushrooms, tomato or minestrone soups. It is a close relative to marjoram.
Oregano is an important culinary herb, used for the flavor of its leaves, which can be more flavorful when dried than fresh. It has an aromatic, warm and slightly bitter taste, which can vary in intensity. Good quality oregano may be strong enough almost to numb the tongue. Oregano's most prominent modern use is as the staple herb of Italian-American cuisine. Its popularity in the US began when soldiers returning from World War II brought back with them a taste for the “pizza herb” which had probably been eaten in southern Italy for centuries. There, it is most frequently used with roasted, fried or grilled vegetables, meat and fish. Unlike most Italian herbs oregano combines well with spicy foods, which are popular in southern Italy. It is less commonly used in the north of the country, as marjoram generally is preferred. The herb is also widely used in Turkish, Palestinian, Lebanese, Egyptian, Syrian, Greek, Portuguese, Spanish, Philippine and Latin American cuisine. In Turkish cuisine, oregano is mostly used for flavoring meat, especially for mutton and lamb. In barbecue and kebab restaurants, it can be usually found on table, together with paprika, salt and pepper. The leaf is most often used in Greece to add flavor to Greek salad, and is usually added to the lemon-olive oil sauce that accompanies many fish or meat barbecues and some casseroles. Chefs in the southern Philippines to eliminate the odor of carabao or beef when boiling it also use oregano, while simultaneously imparting flavor.
Paprika and use - Paprika's bright red color makes it a pleasing garnish. Sprinkle on eggs, potatoes, fish and bacon slabs. Add with sour cream to make a chicken or a beef sauce. Paprika is a spice made from the grinding of dried bell peppers or chili peppers. In many European languages, the word paprika refers to the Capsicum fruit itself. The seasoning is used in many cuisine to add color and flavor to dishes. Paprika can range from mild to hot. Flavors also vary from country to country. Paprika is produced in a number of places including Hungary, Serbia, Spain and California. After the container is opened paprika should be kept in the refrigerator. Widely used as a garnish for light-colored food it is a popular addition to many rubs, marinades and sauces. It is the principal seasoning in Hungarian goulash and often is used in French dressing.
Parsley, Flakes, and use - Mix them with butter and pour over vegetables or fish. Use as a garnish as well as for flavor. Sprinkle on top of fish after cooking, stuffed eggs, cauliflower, potatoes, carrots, yellow squash, and soups, chicken dishes. Roll cheese balls in the flakes. Toss with buttered noodles or rice. Use to top creamed dishes. Parsley is available fresh or as dried flakes.
Parsley is widely used in Middle Eastern, European, and American cooking. Curly leaf parsley is often used as a garnish. In Central and Eastern Europe and in western Asia, many dishes are served with fresh green chopped parsley sprinkled on top. Green parsley is often used as a garnish on potato dishes (boiled or mashed potatoes), on rice dishes (risotto or pilaf), on fish, fried chicken, lamb or goose, steaks, meat or vegetable stews (like beef bourguignon, goulash or chicken paprikash). In southern and Central Europe, parsley is part of bouquet garni, a bundle of fresh herbs used as an ingredient in stocks, soups, and sauces. Freshly chopped green parsley is used as a topping for soups like chicken soup, green salads or salads like Salade Olivier, on open sandwiches with cold cuts or pâtés. Parsley is a key ingredient in several Middle Eastern salads such as tabbouleh. Persillade is a mixture of chopped garlic and chopped parsley used in French cuisine. Gremolata is a traditional accompaniment to the Italian veal stew, ossobuco alla milanese, a mixture of parsley, garlic, and lemon zest.
Root parsley is very common in central and eastern European cuisine, where it is used as a soup vegetable in many soups and in meat or vegetable stews and casseroles.
Piloncillo is used in Mexican candy - Unlike white sugar, which is flat and one-dimensional in its sweet flavor, piloncillo is smoky, caramel and earthy. It has far more flavor than brown sugar, which is generally just white sugar with a small amount of molasses added back to it.
Poultry seasoning and use - Poultry Seasoning was created mainly for adding to stuffing’s to flavor them. Also use it on all poultry, pork, or veal dishes. A typical mixture of herbs often used in Poultry Seasoning includes marjoram, thyme, sage, and rosemary; other ingredients that may be added separately, depending on taste desired may include parsley, celery seed, basil, ground pepper, nutmeg, garlic powder, or onion powder. Poultry Seasoning is used as a rub on chicken, turkey, pork, veal, lamb and much white meat upland game birds. It may also be used as a seasoning for casseroles, meat loaf, herbed breads, and herb sauces.
Pumpkin Pie Spice Mix and use - Use in pumpkin for pie, bread, cookies, sweet potatoes, acorn squash, sweet potato pie, cakes, cookies and custard.
Add to sugar for spice toast or streusel topping. The Spice consists of cinnamon,
ginger, nutmeg and clove or allspice powders.
To make your own Pumpkin Pie Spice Mix:
Ingredients 1/2 teaspoon of cinnamon into a small bowl or cup.
Add 1/4 teaspoon of ground ginger.
Add 1/8 teaspoon of ground allspice or ground cloves.
Add 1/8 teaspoon of ground nutmeg.
Makes 1 teaspoon of pumpkin pie spice.
Place all in a zip lock bag and shake to mix.
Rosemary and use - Rosemary is a fragrant evergreen with needle-like leaves and has a distinctive fresh, sweet, piney aroma and flavor. Rosemary is available in leaf form. Use with lamb, pork, potatoes, carrots, stews, sauces, marinades, fish, poultry and bread, use on grilled or skewered meat and in roasted potato dishes. Add to vinegar to flavor it. The Rosemary leafs both fresh and dried, are used in traditional Mediterranean cuisine.
Saffron and use – Saffron is the most expensive Spice in the World. Saffron is used in French bouillabaisse, Spanish paella, Milanese risotto, and many Middle Eastern dishes. Saffron has a spicy, pungent, and bitter flavor with a sharp and penetrating odor. A very small pinch goes a long way with Saffron. Use it in Italian risotto, Spanish chicken and rice dishes, French seafood stews and Scandinavian sweet breads.
Saffron contains a dye, which imparts a rich golden-yellow hue to dishes. Saffron's aroma is often described by connoisseurs as reminiscent of metallic honey with grassy or hay-like notes, while its taste has also been noted as hay-like and sweet. Saffron also contributes a luminous yellow-orange coloring to foods. Saffron is widely used in European, Arab, Indian, Persian, and Turkish cuisine. Confectioneries and liquors also often include saffron.
Sage and use - Use for stuffing for poultry, beef, pork, or fish. Add to beef or lamb. Use in pot roast, sausages, beef stew, venison, cheese spreads, vegetable soup, chowders, and eggplant. As a kitchen herb, sage has a slight peppery flavor. In British cooking, it is used for flavoring fatty meats, Sage Derby cheese, poultry or pork stuffing, Lincolnshire sausage, and in sauces. Sage is also used in Italian cooking, in the Balkans, and the Middle East. It is one of the major herbs used in the traditional turkey stuffing for the Thanksgiving Day dinner in the United States.
Savory, summer, and uses - Summer savory is a traditional popular herb in Atlantic Canada, where it is used in the same way sage is elsewhere. It is the main flavoring in dressing for many fowl, mixed with ground pork and other basic ingredients to create a thick meat dressing known as "cretonade", which is excellent with turkey, goose and duck. It also is used to make stews such as fricot, and in meat pies. It is usually available year-round in local grocery stores in dried form and is used in varying proportions, sometimes added to recipes in large generous heaping spoonfuls (such as in cretonade), and sometimes more subtly (as in beans, for which savory has a natural affinity). Summer savory is a characteristic ingredient of herbes de Provence, a fairly standard mixture of dried herbs sold in most French food stores. It is also widely used as a seasoning for grilled meats and barbecues, as well as in stews and sauces.
Salt and uses – Salt can used on anything to bring out flavors and has a flavor of it’s own. Salt for human consumption is produced in different forms: unrefined salt (such as sea salt), refined salt (table salt), and iodized salt. It is a crystalline solid, white, pale pink or light gray in color, normally obtained from sea water or rock deposits. Edible rock salts may be slightly grayish in color because of mineral content. Kosher Salt is a course ground salt, with no chemicals added. Used by many cooks in brines, rubs, and marinades. Also used for coating the rim of the glass for Margaritas. Salt brightens food flavors and balances sweetness and acidity by decreasing the sourness of acid and increasing the sweetness of sugar. Use 1 teaspoon per quart for soups and sauces. 2 teaspoons per pound for boneless raw meat. 1 teaspoon per 4 cups flours for dough. 1 teaspoon per two cups liquid for cooked cereal. 1 teaspoon per 3 cups water for boiled vegetables. 1 tablespoon per 2 quarts water for pasta.
Texas Chili Powder and uses - Use in guacamole, tomato sauce, corn and corn bread, and Spanish rice. Mix into pinto beans, bean dip, tamale pie enchiladas and chili con carne. Season chicken wings, hamburgers and beef or chicken stews. Toss with shredded Cheddar cheese and melt over tortilla chips for nachos. Ingredients mixed contain ground cumin seeds, onion powder, Mexican oregano, chipotle chili powder, garlic powder, allspice. Pre-blended chili powder was first invented to season the iconic Texas dish chili con carne.
Tarragon is one of the four fines herbs of French cooking, and particularly suitable for chicken, lasagna, fish and egg dishes. Tarragon is one of the main components of Béarnaise sauce. Fresh, lightly bruised sprigs of tarragon may be steeped in vinegar to impart their flavor. Tarragon is used to flavor a popular carbonated soft drink in the countries of Azerbaijan, Armenia, Georgia and, by extension, Russia, Ukraine and Kazakhstan. The drink, named Tarhun, is made out of sugary tarragon concentrate and colored bright green. In Slovenia, tarragon is used as a spice for a traditional sweet cake called potica.
Tarragon Leaves - Add to turtle or chicken soups, peas, spinach, yellow squash, corn, cauliflower, mushroom, bearnaise sauce, salad greens, potato, tuna, chicken, egg and pasta salads, and sauces for fish or chicken.
Texas Chili Powder - Use in guacamole, tomato sauce, corn and corn bread, and Spanish rice. Mix into pinto beans, bean dip, tamale pie enchiladas and chili con carne. Season chicken wings, hamburgers and beef or chicken stews. Toss with shredded Cheddar cheese and melt over tortilla chips for nachos. Basic ingredients contains; chili pepper, cumin, oregano, black pepper and garlic
Thyme, Ground, uses - Use on green beans, eggplant, carrots and zucchini. Add it to Beef stew, barbecue and pot pies. Use in cheese spreads or sauces. Thyme is widely used in cooking. Thyme is often used to flavor meats, soups and stews. It has a particular affinity to and is often used as a primary flavor with lamb, tomatoes and eggs. Thyme, while flavorful, does not overpower and blends well with other herbs and spices. Thyme is sold both fresh and dried. Fresh thyme is commonly sold in bunches of sprigs. A sprig is a single stem snipped from the plant. If the recipe does not specify fresh or dried, assume that it means fresh. Dried thyme is widely used in Armenia. It is perfectly acceptable to substitute dried for whole thyme. Thyme leaves; Use with green beans, eggplant, carrots and zucchini, tomato soups and lamb. Mix in with barbecue or spaghetti sauce, cheese spreads, sauces, pot pies, cheese and liqueurs.
Turmeric, Ground, uses - Use to make pickles, chow-chow and relishes. Add to chicken and seafood casseroles, rice to give a yellow color. Use in mayonnaise, cream sauces, and scrambled eggs for color. In medieval Europe, turmeric became known as Indian saffron, since it was widely used as an alternative to the far more expensive saffron spice. It is one of the key ingredients for many Indian, Persian and Thai dishes such as in curry and many more. Most usage of turmeric is in the form of root powder. In recipes outside South Asia, turmeric is sometimes used as an agent to impart a rich, custard-like yellow color. It is used in canned beverages and baked products, dairy products, ice cream, yogurt, yellow cakes, orange juice, biscuits, popcorn color, sweets, cake icings, cereals, sauces and gelatins. It is a significant ingredient in most commercial curry powders. Turmeric is mostly used in savory dishes, as well as some sweet dishes, such as the cake sfouf. Turmeric has been used to color cheeses, yogurt, dry mixes, salad dressings, winter butter and margarine. Turmeric is also used to give a yellow color to some prepared mustard, canned chicken broth and other foods. Many Persian dishes use turmeric as a starter ingredient for almost all Iranian fry ups (which typically consist of oil, onions and turmeric followed by any other ingredients that are to be included). In Nepal, turmeric is widely grown and is extensively used in almost every vegetable and meat dish in the country for its color, as well as for its medicinal value. In South Africa, turmeric is traditionally used to give boiled white rice a golden color.
Vanilla Extract - Use in sour cream frosting, rice pudding, whipped cream topping, French pancakes, cakes and pies. Vanilla extract is a solution containing the flavor compound vanillin. Macerating and percolating vanilla beans in a solution of ethyl alcohol and water makes pure vanilla extract. In the United States, in order for a vanilla extract to be called pure, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration requires that the solution contain a minimum of 35% alcohol and 13.35 ounces of vanilla bean per gallon. Vanilla extract is the most common form of vanilla used today. Mexican, Tahitian, Indonesian and Bourbon vanilla are the main varieties. Natural vanilla flavoring is derived from real vanilla beans with little to no alcohol. The maximum amount of alcohol that is usually present is only 2%-3%. Also on the market is imitation vanilla extract, a wood by-product usually made by soaking alcohol into wood, which contains vanillin. The vanillin is then chemically treated to mimic the taste of natural vanilla.
White pepper and uses - has a similar but earthier flavor than black pepper. Used in many dishes, sauces, rubs, and marinades. White pepper consists of the seed of the pepper plant alone, with the darker colored skin of the pepper fruit removed. This is usually accomplished by a process known as retting, where fully ripe red pepper berries are soaked in water for about a week, during which the flesh of the pepper softens and decomposes. Rubbing then removes what remains of the fruit, and the naked seed is dried. Sometimes alternative processes are used for removing the outer pepper from the seed, including removing the outer layer through mechanical, chemical or biological methods. Ground white pepper is sometimes used in Chinese cooking or in dishes like salad, light-colored sauces or mashed potatoes, where black pepper would visibly stand out. White pepper has a slightly different flavor from black pepper due to the lack of certain compounds that are present in the outer fruit layer of the drupe but are not found in the seed.
Chefs and Cooks are always creating delicious new dishes by experimenting with spices. A rule of thumb “never add too much of a spice to change the flavour of the focused item you are preparing and always taste as you go along”. Write down (to avoid forgetting) what spice/spices, the brand name and the amount you added or subtracted from the original recipe. You will be able to recreate "from your notes" the new recipe over again. Try your new recipe on guests for feedback. Hit or miss, never give up being creative much like an artist. Bon Appétit!