Sunday, February 6, 2011

Spicing it up

I guess you could say I like relatively simple food.
Yes, some may say I'm boring because I don't want to eat truffles or foods I can't pronounce.
But what's wrong with clean, simple food?


 Whilst you may never find me eating overpriced culinary delicacies
you will find me in the kitchen, playing around with different herbs and spices.

Herbs and spices are a little bit like magic.
A dash of this and a sprinkle of that and your dish tastes 10, 000 times better than it did two seconds ago.

So when I got sent a bunch of Herbie's Spices, 
I knew that some creativity would soon be flowing in my kitchen.

First I needed some inspiration
and the "Herbie in South India" DVD I was sent was perfect for the job. 
With recipes like Mango Dal, Vegetarian Sambar and Herbie's Sunday Curry I felt like a had a better understanding of the spices contained in the package. 

The Curry Mix with Whole Seeds and Spicesis a blend of coriander seed, tumeric, cumin, paprika, chilli, mustard seeds, cassia, ginger, pepper and cardamon.
It's a perfect full bodied curry base with only a light heat which makes it perfect for the chilli fearing.

The Berbere is an African Spice mix which is perfect for grilling. 
The mix of cumin seed, coriander, black peppercorns, ajowan seed, fenugreek seed, allspice, ginger, chilli, nutmeg and cloves is perfect for sprinkling on meat before grilling. 
The heat from the spice mix works extremely well with fresh, summery salads.

Ras El Hanout is a Morrocan blend of spices, perfect for tagines 
It's a mix of paprika, cumin, ginger, coriander, cassia, tumeric, fennel seed, cardamon, allspice, nutmeg, dill seed, galangal, orris root, bay leaves, caraway seed, cayenne, cloves, mace, black pepper and saffron. 
Ras El Hanout actually means "top of the shop" or the very best spice blend on offer.
Adding 1/2 a teaspoon of Ras el Hanout to each cup of cous cous makes an extremely fragrant Moroccan side dish.

Balmain & Rozelle Spice is a spice mix developed by Herbie to celebrate the "Feat of Sydney".
It was created as a testament to the depth of Australia's broad food heritage. 
The mix of Asian spice flavours as well as European, Indian and Australian Native flavours works surprisingly well together.
The mix contains Kaffir Lime Leaves, Lemon Myrtle, Tumeric, Salt, Cumin, Ginger, Garlic, Chilli, Coriander Seed, Galangal, Caraway and Cayenne.

And of course you can't forget the basics! 
Herbie's Super Grade Extra Black Peppercorns is a mix of black, white, green and pink pepper
that is highly aromatic and perfect for freshly grinding over food to give it that extra kick. 

Herbie's Spices are available online or at a number of stockists
and their range includes spices from around the world, meaning you can create dishes that feel like they've come straight from a lebanese kitchen or a vietnamese street stall.

But do tell me, 
What's your favourite spice? 
I loveeeeeeeeeee Cajun Spice Mixes and Mexican Flavours.

Kristy received Herbie's spices courtesy of
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  1. most of these spices are really new to me, or at least the names of the blends! my favorite spices would have to be basil, thyme, oregano, coriander, marjoram, cardamom, cloves, nutmeg, cumin, dill, sage, paprika, cayenne and black pepper

  2. I would HAVE to agree with you on basil, thyme, oregano, nutmeg, cumin, parika, cayenne and of course black pepper. Italian herbs like basil are definitely some of my most used!