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Monday, 22 February 2010

Friendship is the spice of life

My dear friend Janette came round this lunch time and very kindly left me with a whole load of dried herbs and spices, a tub of sea salt flakes and a bottle each of vinaigrette balsamique, chilli infused olive oil and red wine vinegar as well as a hachoire, spud masher and a thing that I don't know what to do with. She and  her husband Rick are very kind and I hope to make use of them all over time. Thankyou so much.

If anyone can offer suggestions for the herbs and spices I will do my best to make best use of them. They are:
  • Mustard seeds
  • Freeze dried chives
  • Dried oregano
  • Freeze dried tarragon
  • Ground fenugreeek
  • Season all
  • Saffron
  • Coriander leaf
  • Whole cardamons
My store cupboard also has:
  • Fennel seed
  • Caraway seed
  • Coriander seed
  • Ground cinnamon
  • Nutmeg
  • Star anise (whole)
  • Cinnamon sticks
  • Garam masala
  • Hot chilli powder
  • Seseme seeds
The bottles Janette gave me were:
  • Maille vinaigrette Balsamique
  • Chilli infused olive oil
  • Red wine vinegar
Any suggestions for recipes for any of these?


French Fancy said...

I've not tried it but I have heard that balsamic vinegar does a lovely job of caramelising roasted vegetables. I might try it next time as a change from regular oo.

Have fun experimenting.

the fly in the web said...

Have a look at Balti recipes for some of your goodies.
I have a friend who goes to India every year and always brings back spices, oils, etc.,so now I'm wondering how I can use lemon grass oil...on the label it says it is good for washing windows!

Dean said...

Hmm nice stuff,
Find (google) a nice sundried Tomato bread recipe then add a little Tarragon, Chives and Coriander maybe add a little chilli depending on your taste.
Use the Balsamique and Olive oil to dip in.
Main course would be a nice curry/stew using a few complementary herbs and spices or just a nice marinade for a piece of meat using the bottles (mix and adjust to taste) and a few of the herbs used in the starter bread to carry the flavour through to the main and some of French fancies caramelised veg :)
And if you are not going with a curry/rice for main a nice rice pudding with the nutmeg cinnamon for dessert.

Oh and what time is dinner as im now hungry lol.

Karen said...

I'd use the saffron to make saffron buns - they are easy to make, so long as you can make bread (which you can),& although you need a decent large pinch of saffron, the flavour & colour are worth it.

I like balsamic vinegar as a glaze for chicken, or simply to dip bread into. Or ripe English strawberries - which sounds strange, but a tiny bit of balsamic really goes well with them.

I've made pumpkin pie using cinnamon and/or cardamon (grind the seeds up first) & I've also used ground cardamon in shortbread. You have a great selection of ingredients - & should have fun experimenting.