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Here you will find information and descriptions on a large number of herbs and spices. You may even find some photos and recipes along the way. Click on the letter of the seasoning in which you are interested and enjoy your tour of the Spice Book.




Much of the information in the SpiceRack section of our website has come from material provided by Penzeys Spices as well as a number of other resources around the Internet.

Photos throughout these pages come from a variety of sources around the Internet. Many came from an excellent spice site, "Gernot Katzer's Spice Pages," while others came from Penzeys catalogues.

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Penzeys Spices


Nigella AKA Black Cumin

Nigella Seeds


Nigella: Nigella is best known as Black Cumin although it's flavor and aroma are nothing alike. The actual plant is quite nice to look at and is grown for it's flowers which are blue in color. The actual spice is the small black seed inside the pod. Photo to the left. Nigella is produced heavily in India where it's use is very common. Nigella can be found in most Indian food stores, and may be labeled Kala Jeera or Shahi Jeera or simply black cumin. There is not much in the way of aroma from Nigella unless it is being dry roasted. The flavor is similar to earthy herbs and freshly cracked pepper. Generally used in curries and masalas in Indian cooking, Nigella can be used in a variety of Semi Sweet to Savory applications. Try mixing Nigella with Cinnamon and Ground Anise Seed for a different flavor on roast Chicken

Northwoods Seasoning: A great place to fish, an even better place to eat. This Northern Wisconsin-style blend is a traditional mix that is a perfect seasoning for family-style fried or baked chicken and fish, green salads with oil and vinegar, egg and potato salad, and Door County-style fish boils. Use heavily, 1 teaspoon per pound, for meats and vegetables. Coarse flake salt, paprika, black pepper, thyme, rosemary, garlic and chipotle.

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Nutmeg (Myristica fragrans): Nutmeg is the inner kernel of the fruit. When ripe, the fruit splits open to reveal bright red arils which lie around the shell of the nutmeg -- and once dried are known as mace blades. Photo to the right. The flavor of both spices (mace and nutmeg) is very similar -- warm, sweet and aromatic, although nutmeg is more delicate than mace. Both Grenadian and East Indian ground nutmeg are easy to use and flavorful -- perfect for sausage-making, syrups, and fresh fruit. The whole nutmeg are very large, about 80 per pound (5 - 6 nutmeg per ounce), making them easier to hold and grate by hand. Ten seconds of rubbing on a small-holed grater will yield 1/2 teaspoon of fresh, flavorful nutmeg which is the perfect topping for cheese dishes -- from sauces, to quiche, to macaroni and cheese. The Island of Grenadian the West Indies grows some of the finest nutmeg in the world. Until recently, this Grenadian nutmeg could not be commercially ground because of its extremely high and flavorful essential oil content. When using the ground Grenadian nutmeg, use 2/3 of what the recipe calls for, as it is very potent. Nutmeg is a must for barbecue sauce. In Europe, nutmeg is used atop most baked goods, hot beverages, and cream sauces. For the best flavor, buy whole nutmeg and grate just before adding to your recipe.



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