Tag Archives: food preferences

What are spices good for anyhow?

28 Jul
Spices used in cooking

Photo: Library of Congress

True confessions time.  Our family lore is that my father’s ancestors were spice merchants.  In fact my own father was in the spice business for a while. But I grew up in a spice-challenged household. When my mom set up housekeeping, she got spices but I never saw her use any of them except cinnamon.  She kept spices so long that when she moved after my own kids were born, I found her spice shelves filled with containers that she bought when I was a kid.

If you like well-spiced food – or just love a few foods that must use more than salt and pepper to give them that delicious oomph you crave, then let’s get down to business.  Not all spices give food a hot taste – some are delicate but when used properly, give recipes an unmistakable and delectable smell and taste.There are many spices to learn about and many types of cuisine for which spices are indispensable.

Here are a few tips to get you started.

  • Learn how to use a few spices at a time.
  • Decide which ones to learn about based on what type of food you like. Find recipes for dishes you crave and see what spices they use.
  • Spices typically lose their “punch” over time, so don’t buy them in large quantities unless you know that you are going to use them in the next few months.
spices sold in bulk

Spices sold in bulk Photo: Adam Baker

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For food lovers who can’t cook

28 Jul
food friends - happy ingredients waiting to be used in your delicious cooking

you're among friends - food friends

If you love good food, this blog is for you. This blog is really, definitely, and especially for you …

if you haven’t done much cooking up until now, and

if you wish you could bake and cook up a storm – or just make a really good meal, and

if you don’t ask for recipes from your mom or friends because you’re afraid you won’t be able to make the dish as well as they did, and

if you’re not conversant with all the intricacies of kitchen gadgets or knowledgeable about various types of cuisine, and

if you are adventurous by nature, but perhaps a bit intimidated by the foodie bloggers and celebrity chefs, and

if you like to be health conscious but you’re not health-crazed, and

if you can’t afford to eat out as much as you would like or just prefer not to eat out all the time.