How To Make Your Own Spice Blends
There are plenty of reasons a cooking enthusiast may opt to create his or her own spice blends. In addition to the fact that it’s the ultimate way to customize your dish, there are many types of dishes that can benefit from a blend of spices not already sold in stores. It’s also a great way to make the dish exactly to your liking, whether you like a sweet rub on your chicken wings or a spicy bite to your marinara sauce. Here are a few tips for making spice blends that will complement your dishes perfectly:
A holiday blend: If you thought you simply couldn’t have enough clove, cinnamon and allspice in the month of December, you’re not alone! Many seasonal recipes like spice cakes and mulled wine call for at least one of these spices, if not a mixture of all of them. However, those spices will likely sit in your cabinet until next Christmas. Epicurious suggests making the spice blend, “ras-el-hanout,” which translates to “top of the shelf” in Arabic. Consisting of spices like ginger, allspice and nutmeg, this spice blend works well on typically savory dishes that use lamb.
“Try a pepper blend instead of just black peppercorns.”
A steak blend: It’s often been said that a good cut of steak cooked properly needs very little in terms of flavoring. However, that doesn’t mean you can’t still experiment with your steaks! As long as you’re not dipping them in steak sauce, it’s fair game! The ultimate way to season a steak is to use the right spices and just enough to give the meat a little crust. Try mixing coarse salt, black pepper and dried parsley flakes. If you want something a little more exotic, try a pepper blend instead of just black peppercorns.
A pepper blend: Speaking of pepper blends, not all recipes will suffice with some ground black pepper. For dishes that you want to add a little kick to without going too far overboard, look no further than an exotic pepper blend. Make these blends with different colored peppercorns, like black, white, green and red. Not only will this mix of peppercorns add some color to an otherwise bland-looking dish – like eggs or potatoes – but each peppercorn has its own distinct flavor.