What is a spice? Spices are the dried seeds (cumin, coriander; cardamom, mustard), buds (cloves), fruit or flower parts (peppercorns, allspice), bark and roots (cassia, cinnamon and ginger) or leaves (kaffir lime leaves, curry leaves) of plants.
They are usually of tropical origin, and almost all are native to the Orient. There are exceptions: allspice, vanilla and chillies were originally found in tropical Central America and the West Indies.
A more recent alternative is spice extracts. These consist of the flavour components of a world spice, dispersed on one of several types of base, the most suitable bases for pickle and sauce use, for example, being salt or dextrose. Natural materials used in flavour creations are still most often isolated from essential oils. Extraction of oils and oleoresins is accomplished using a range of methods.
Anise is indigenous to the Eastern Mediterranean and coastal countries of the area..
There are 64 basil species, all native to the subtropics and tropics, but generally..
The bay is a tree of the sun under the celestial sign of Leo. Culpeper, the herbalist..
This is one of the world's oldest culinary spices, with evidence of seeds found in..
It is said that cardamoms grew in the gardens of the King of Babylon in 720 BC..
Cinnamon is appreciated in a multitude of dishes from around the world. The..
The name clove is believed to be derived from the French word clou meaning nail..
Coriander has been used as a flavouring and medicine since ancient times. Seeds..
Cumin has a long and fascinat inchg history. Evidence shows that it was known to the..
Widely used in Indian cooking, authentic Indian curry powder is freshly ground..
Dill seeds are invariably found in jars of pickled cucumbers. Crushed dill seeds marry..
The name comes from the Latin foenum, a variety of fragrant hay . Fennel Lias been..
The name is believed to come from the Sanskrit (an ancient Indo-Aryan language)..
Nutmeg and mace are different parts of the same, fruit of the nutmeg tree..
Early Greeks wove marjoram into funeral wreaths and planted it on graves to..
Mustard has featured in history and literature since early times. Pythagorean..
When Columbus sailed from Spain looking for the East Indies, nutmeg was one..
The Greeks called these fragrant leafed herbs "Brightness of the Mountain."..
A fine powder made from specially mild varieties of pepper, the fruit from the..
Most cooks today don't appreciate the plentiful and inexpensive supply of a spice..
Rosmarinus means "dew of the sea," and in the wild this herb is most commonly..
The name saffron comes from the Arabic za'faran, which means yellow - a sacred..
There are more than 700 species of salvias, many of them spectacular when..
French tarragon (A dracun-culus) is a selected form of exceptional flavor. It rarely..
There are some 350 species of thyme. They share much in common, most being..
The name turmeric is believed to have come from the Latin terra merita, merit of..
Jamaica provides most of the world spices supply. The spice is so named because it tastes like a combination of cinnamon, nutmeg and cloves. As with other world spices, it should be stored in a cool, dark place for no more than 6 months. World spices are used in both savory and sweet cooking.