A Spicy Encounter – Part 3 of 4 – Pungent Spices

Spices come from the buds, bark, stems, roots, berries and seeds of plant life. Any component except for the leaf is termed a spice, the leaves are categorised as herbs.

Spices are generally grouped into 5 categories primarily based on flavor – sweet; tangy; smelly; hot and amalgamating. Today we are able to delve further into the smelly spices and find out there secrets and techniques.

Pungent spices are the ones which give a burst of flavor. They are extraordinarily sturdy and as such most effective a small quantity is needed. But do not be fooled into thinking that this kind of small quantity of aspect need to imply it isn’t critical. The stinky spice is the secret to many a notable dish and frequently is the distinction between OK and gourmet.

Caraway Seed

An historical spice, regarded to be used as early as 3000BC. Caraway seeds had been valued for his or her medicinal makes use of as well as culinary.

The seeds have a heat, earthy aroma with guidelines of aniseed, orange peel and fennel. Caraway seeds assist in balancing wealthy, fatty ingredients and therefore is often utilized in cheese dishes. It is likewise a common element in garam masala, used in Indian delicacies.


This is a completely versatile spice and may be used in either sweet or savory dishes. Green pods are picked from a native Southern Indian tropical plant. The pods contain 10 to twenty tiny brown seeds. These seeds have a warm, flowery flavor.

Cardamom is used in Indian curries, Middle-eastern dishes, rice dishes and desserts. Use floor cardamom or frequently a bruised cardamom pod is referred to as for. The pod is barely squashed which assists in freeing the flavor.

Celery Seed

The celery seed comes from and historic European herb. It has a robust taste that compliments properly with tomatoes and vegetable juices. Celery seed will regularly find it’s way right into a ‘Bloody Mary’.

Celery seed is regularly mixed with different spices along with paprika, ginger, cinnamon and pepper to create spice blends for seafood, chook and red meat.


We have possibly all used cloves at one time or any other. But did you realize they’re a natural antiseptic and anesthetic.

Cloves are the dried flower buds of a tropical tree local to Maluku (formerly Indonesian Spice Islands). They are purple in coloration but have little taste while first picked. Once dried they turn dark brown and eugenol, a stinky oil develops.

Cloves although local to Indonesia performed a big function in the spice exchange and are discovered in almost every delicacies across the world.


Cumin is local to the Nile valley and has been located inside the tombs of Egyptian pharaohs. It has additionally been used in England for the reason that 13th century. The Spanish took cumin seeds to the Americas and it’s far an quintessential a part of Mexican chili powder.

It has a stinky, earthy, curry-like taste and used to produce complete-bodied taste curries. For the first-class results use gently roasted whole seeds or excellent best darkish, oily cumin powder. Try a few for your pumpkin soup next time.


This is one of those matters I can in no way exercise session how saffron buy online  to spell. Fenugreek seed comes from a clover searching plant and has been used medicinally since ancient times.

It has a awesome bitterness that provides distinct chew to hot curries which include vindaloo. Hard to believe however the seeds produce an extract this is used to make imitation maple syrup.


From South-East Asia, galangal is similar to ginger but has a sharper aroma. It comes from the rhizome of the plant and is used in Thai cooking.

The pungent taste helps to neutralize overly fishy flavors.


Ginger comes from the rhizome (root) of the tropical ginger plant. The power of taste of the piece of ginger is decided by how antique the rhizome changed into when picked. Young, gentle rhizomes are nearly candy rather than older rhizomes which are extra fibrous and feature a robust taste.

Find ginger used in lots of Indian and Asian dishes. It can be used in cakes and in savory dishes. Ginger is likewise properly for upset stomachs.


The juniper berry is a small blue-black berry with a completely unique pine aroma and astringency. It is satisfactory known as the flavor enhancer of gin.

Use dried juniper berries to reduce the strong flavor of recreation and the fattiness of duck. It could be very robust and only a few berries is wanted – five berries in keeping with 1 pound of meat. For a spectacular bird casserole (pink wine, sage, thyme, bay leaves), upload more than one juniper berries.

Lemon Myrtle

A local of Australia, it is the leaves that are used (a contradiction to the rule that leaves are herbs). They give a completely unique clean lemony aroma and a taste this is greater like lemon zest.

Fantastic in Asian dishes in particular with hen, seafood and greens.

Nigella Seeds

I first found these approximately years ago. They are robust, sharp tasting, little black seeds.

Nigella seeds paintings properly with Indian cooking, potato and other carbohydrates.


The maximum cost and treasured spice within the world. Saffron threads are the dried stigmas of a crimson, autumn, crocus flower. Each flower most effective produces three stigmas. It takes approximately 75,000 flora to supply 1 pound of saffron. But due to it’s sturdy coloring strength and severe taste, best a small amount is required.

Saffron produces a vivid orange-yellow coloration and an intense stinky taste. It is great to buy excellent best threads and no longer powder to ensure authenticity. Soak the threads in heat water for at least 15 mins previous to use.

Star Anise

Star anise is a dried, big name-formed fruit harvested from a Chinese Magnolia tree. It has a heat, licorice flavor with below currents of cinnamon.

It is utilized in spice blends and observed in Chinese cooking.


Another native to Australia. It is seed amassed from specific species of acacia. Ground wattleseed has a woody, nutty flavor with espresso overtones.

It may be used to taste ice-cream, cake and cookies or used as a rub on white meats.

Well, there you have got it, a brief creation into the sector of smelly spices, do not permit their strongness scare you off.

Until our next Spicy Encounter
Enjoy Cooking!

Lisa “The Crock Cook”

Lisa’s love for food and a laugh, was the catalyst for this a self taught cook dinner to put in writing a website about chinese language fortune coo