Garam masala spice mix

In the pantry: Garam masala

This is a common blend of spice used in Indian cooking, especially North Indian. Usually made up of spices including black pepper, cardamom, cumin, and nutmeg, garam masala can contain up to 12 spices. It is is an all-purpose spice blend that adds a warm and sweet flavour to chicken, lamb, fish, rice, or bread, and is often added to a dish towards the end … Continue reading In the pantry: Garam masala

In the pantry: Kaffir lime leaves

In the pantry: Kaffir lime leaves

Much as the name suggests these leaves originate off the citrus trees of kaffir limes, a plant native to tropical Asia including Thailand, Myanmar, and Malaysia. But unlike normal lime leaves, kaffir limes are thicker and more aromatic, which means not too many leaves are needed to give a zesty punch to a dish. The leaves are often when used in stews, curries, and stir-fries. … Continue reading In the pantry: Kaffir lime leaves

In the pantry: Sumac

In the pantry: Sumac

Sumac is the flower of a short shrub grown in many subtropical regions, in particular Africa and North America. Tart in flavour and acidic in nature, Sumac is commonly used in Middle Eastern cuisine sprinkled over in salads or as part of a meat marinade. It is often a substitute for lemon because the tanginess of sumac is not as overpowering. The bonus is that … Continue reading In the pantry: Sumac

In the pantry: Vanilla

The most common association to vanilla is ice cream. But where exactly does the vanilla flavour come from and that is used to help bring a floral sweetness to many desserts including ice cream, cakes, puddings, and custards? Derived from vanilla orchids, it’s originally from Mexico and now widely grown in South America, Indonesia, and China. Vanilla can be bought as whole pods, in powder … Continue reading In the pantry: Vanilla

In the pantry: Dukkah

On the menu of modern Middle Eastern influenced restaurants, dukkah has been making appearances. The Egyptian spice blend of toasted nuts and seeds and is often served as a dip with bread and olive oil. But it can also be used to sprinkle on top of pasta, roasted vegetables, and even fruit salad. Dukkah can vary from ingredient to ingredient but the most common ones … Continue reading In the pantry: Dukkah