The history of Spices
Spices have been used by humans since ancient times, all over the world. They were originally prized for their ability to mask spoilage of meat or vegetables, or just improve their taste enough that it was worth consuming food without these benefits "in spite of" these ingredients, that's where the phrase "spice up" is derived from.
Spices are the dried, ground-up parts of plants that have a strong flavour. They're usually from turmeric and ginger and cinnamon, but they can also come in different flavours or colours (red pepper flakes). Spices provide colour to dishes without adding any calories or fat!
The early history of spices shows that they were used in the Middle Ages to make a dish go farther, as spices had a higher value than meat and vegetables.
How were spices distributed?
-Basic spices were used by the ancient Egyptians, Syrians, and Indians as well. But India is where the spice trade began to really flourish.
-The Romans traded with them for their valuable goods (spices), which later led to a monopoly on this business in Europe until they ran out of money after 1200 AD. The Middle Ages was when Europeans discovered new sources like nutmeg from China and black pepper from South East Asia!
-The Spanish, Portuguese and Dutch all took part in the spice trade with India.
-Christopher Columbus and Vasco da Gama were the first Europeans to discover new sources of spice.
-The spice trade was hugely profitable in the 1600s and 1700s, with spices being worth more than their weight in gold!
-Most spices today are still grown in Asia, and the dry climate makes for ideal growing conditions.
Africa is a big player in the spice world too because of their vast stretches of land that make up most of Africa's population--they've historically been less affected by European colonialism, which led to India being where all trade went instead.
The British Raj era left behind some interesting blends from mixing Indian cuisine with African influences--for example, curry powder has turmeric, coriander leaf/root, cumin seed (all Asian), plus cinnamon stick and black pepper (African).
The Dutch conquered Indonesia and introduced their own blend of spices to the area, such as cloves and nutmeg (both from the Indonesian region).
Fun fact - Curry powder is the most popular spice mix in the world. It's usually a blend of turmeric, coriander leaf/root, cumin seed (all Asian), plus cinnamon stick and black pepper (African).
Favorite Spice For New Zealand Cooking:
Turmeric--our favorite! Turmerics are rich in anti-inflammatory properties that can help lower your risk for heart disease or cancer. They're also known to reduce joint pain associated with arthritis as well as relieve symptoms of lupus, rheumatoid arthritis and other autoimmune diseases. In addition to these benefits it has been shown to provide relief from depression too. This list goes on and on...you'll find out more about this incredible spice on the main page of this website
Spices are useful in cooking because they add flavor without adding fat! You can use them for both sweet dishes or savory ones--it's all about your preference!
An example is using black pepper to spice up a dish with potatoes that might otherwise be pretty plain on its own. Rosemary sprinkled over some salmon you've grilled will give it a delicious zing while not changing how much protein there is per serving at all.
It really doesn't matter what type of cuisine you're into; new flavors await when spicing things up just a little bit more!
There are many spices out there -- almost as many as there are people who use them! Each spice has its own history and distinct aroma which is used for various purposes: *cinnamon - sweet & fragrant with spicy undertones
*cloves - warm & spicy
*dill weed- herbaceous with notes of anise, lemon, garlic & onion; perfect for soups and sauces
*garlic powder - provides a subtle garlic flavor to dishes
*onion powder - can be used in the same way as onion, but with less risk of overpowering an entire dish
*peppermint extract- adds freshness and cool mint flavour; perfect for desserts or cooling your mouth after eating spicy foods.
It's been said that the history of spices can tell us a lot about how people have lived and what they valued. Spices, like salt, were not always available to all people in every region. They've become an integral part of our cuisine across many different cultures because we want them! We think it’s important for everyone to have access to fresh spices, so you don't need to go through any more disappointment in your cooking endeavours than necessary. That’s why, at Premium Spices, we make sure there is no shortage of high-quality spices for sale online or in stores near you. What are some unique combinations you enjoy? Come see us today - your taste buds will thank you later!
When you buy fresh spices from us today, you’ll be able to take advantage of our low prices and the convenience of shopping online. We carry a variety of spices that are perfect for any dish or occasion. Whether it's your favorite BBQ sauce recipe or one-of-a-kind curry powder blend, we have all your spice needs covered!
Browse through our inventory to find something new to add to your pantry today!