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The celery varietal that supplies us with what we consider celery seed is nothing like the other celery that we know so well. Dried celery seeds are light brown in color and have a penetrating, hay-like aroma. The flavor is strong, slightly bitter, warm, and lingers on the palate. Great for pickles, mustard, chutney, and used in celery salt.
Ever heard someone say Open Sesame. This phrase is rumored to have started as a reference to the sesame seed pod that pops open at full maturity, spilling out seeds. This tiny flat seed was harvested initially for its nutty oil used in cooking. Popular in Asian cuisine, white sesame seeds' uses include: breads, crackers, sushi rolls and making tahini paste.
Star anise is the dried, star-shaped fruit of a small Asian evergreen tree. While unrelated to each other, star anise has an even stronger licorice flavor than anise seed and is used in many baking recipes. It is a key ingredient in Chinese savory cooking and is one of the five ingredients in the renowned Chinese 5-Spice blend.
A tiny flat seed harvested initially for its nutty oil used in cooking. Black sesame seeds make a strikingly different garnish and have a slightly richer flavor than their white counterparts. For extra crunch, roll meat/seafood in a bowl of these seeds before cooking, use for tuna steaks and sushi, mix into rice and noodle dishes or toss into a salad.
The fruit of the nutmeg tree produces two edible spices - the nutmeg nut and the outer covering, mace. A whole nutmeg can be stored for years and when grated fresh ensures the strongest flavor (sweet and warm), while pre-ground is more convenient. Nutmeg is traditionally used in baking, but also adds flavor to cheese sauces, pasta fillings, spinach and fish.
Brown and yellow mustard come from the same family, but different varieties of the plant. The brown mustard seed is smaller and hotter than its yellow counterpart, due to its high oil content. Yellow mustard seeds can be ground for making mustard or used in pickling, canning, corned beef, sauerkrauts and boiled vegetables.
Black, brown, and yellow mustard seeds come from the same family, but different varieties of the plant. The brown mustard seed is smaller and hotter than its yellow counterpart, due to its high oil content. The black mustard seed, which is often used interchangeably with brown, is slightly bolder in flavor and larger in size. Common to Asian and African cooking, black mustard seed is used for hot mustards (i.e. Dijon), spicy pickling brines, oil and spice blends, tangy sauces and more.
The edible juniper berry, which is actually a soft cone similar to a pine cone, is the only spice derived from a conifer (a cone-bearing tree or shrub). Its pine-like, spicy flavor is used to freshen and mellow the rich flavor of gamey or fatty foods and to give sauerkraut its distinctive flavor. Along with its distinct culinary uses, juniper has a wide variety of purposes: aromatherapy, perfumery, making gin, beads for jewelry, and decoration.
Along with salt, pepper is one of the oldest and most used spices in the world. Green peppercorns are from the same plants as black, but are picked before fully ripe and are typically soaked in brine before drying. Their flavor is slightly crisper and more herbal than black pepper. As a result, they're preferred in lighter dishes: sauces and salads, dressings, pastas. etc.
Fennel, one of the licorice spices, has a delicate and sweet, yet pungent flavor similar to anise seed and star anise. Although used in many Mediterranean dishes, the Western world is more familiar with fennel seed as a common ingredient in Italian sausages and northern European rye breads. Also a great addition to tea, desserts, pizza and seafood dishes.
Dill seed is the fruit of the dill plant. The seeds flavor is clean, pungent, and reminiscent of caraway, while dill weed (the leaf and stem) has a slightly mellower herb-like flavor. Although rare in cuisines that favor fennel, dill is commonly used in German and Scandinavian cooking. Dill seed is a primary ingredient in pickling spices and seafood boils.
Cloves are the dried, unopened flower buds of a tropical tree native to Indonesia. While utilized in many dishes, use cloves sparingly to avoid overpowering other flavors. Ground cloves are favored in baking (pies), stewed fruits, curries, and other savory dishes, while the whole form is better recognized in studding meats (ham), pickling blends and boils.
1 oz. bag. Cinnamon and cassia (a relative that is commonly mistaken for true cinnamon) are common spices consisting of dried, cured tree bark. Korintje cinnamon (a cassia) comes primarily from Indonesia and is known for its slightly sweet flavor. Our Korintje is notably fresh and the sticks are great for beverages; mulled wine, coffee, tea, cocoa or ground for baking.
1 oz. bag. The chipotle is actually a smoke-dried jalapeño pepper. The chipotle is popular for its use in Mexican and Tex-Mex dishes, but other cuisines are also finding new uses for this versatile pepper. The earthy, smoky, slightly sweet, and spicy flavor is a great addition to many meat marinades (adobo), salsas and stews.
Green cardamom seed (one of the more expensive spices in the Western world) is native to India and South Asia and is used in a variety of ways. The seed is typically removed from the pod (decorticated) and ground to a fine powder. Its pungent and perfume-like flavor is used in curries, in Scandinavian sweet dishes such as coffee cake and in Indian spiced (Chai) tea.
Green cardamom (one of the more expensive spices in the Western world) is native to India and South Asia and is used in a variety of ways. Its pungent and perfume-like flavor is used in many curries, in Scandinavian sweet dishes such as coffee cakes and other pastries, and in Indian spiced (Chai) tea. The whole pod can be added to coffee to add a flavorful twist.
Along with salt, pepper is one of the oldest and best-known spices. These black peppercorns were grown until full maturity and then smoked over hickory wood for a subtle, yet smoky flavor. Great in rubs or seasoning blends, smoked black peppercorns also make for a good finishing pepper. Grind fresh on top of grilled meats, vegetables and salsas. etc.
Along with salt, pepper is one of the oldest and best-known spices. Left on the vine until about half ripe and just before they turn red, the peppercorns are then picked and allowed to dry. It is at this stage that they turn black in color and develop a deep robust flavor with hints of fruit and spiciness. Grind fresh on top of grilled meats, vegetables and salsas. etc.
Anise seeds are small, grayish-brown, and come from a different plant than those of star anise. Anise seed is native to the temperate climates of the Middle East, Africa, and Greece. The anise seed tastes similar to fennel, with a distinctly licorice flavor. It is commonly used in meat and seafood dishes from the region, as well as in liqueurs and some baked breads and pastries.
Allspice is ground from the immature berry of a tropical tree native to Jamaica. Historically, it was named allspice because it contained the flavor nuances of several other popular spices, including cinnamon, cloves, and nutmeg. Due to its full and slightly sweet flavor, allspice is found in many baking recipes though also used in savory dishes.
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