Spice Mix Mixing Party
posted December 16, 2015 7:13 PM   RSS | iCal | +googleCal

Sat January 9 at 2:00 PM, home
7707 N Fiske Ave, Portland, OR, USA (Map & Directions)
Every cuisine in the world seems to have its own spice mix or mixes. I figure if we all get together and everyone brings a few spices, we could make a lot more spice mixes than if we each mixed them at home, and everyone could take home some of each variety. Here's a few common ones for a starting point. Let's get together and make some of them!
We're living somewhere with a huge kitchen so I am offering it as an option for a place. How's January?
posted by aniola to Meetup (19 comments total)

Just add rice!
posted by aniola at 7:15 PM on December 16, 2015

Count me in on this! I have a ton of loose spices I'm mixing on a meal by meal basis. May want to bring guests - I'll ask once a date and time is decided.
posted by thebotanyofsouls at 12:21 PM on December 20, 2015

I am intrigued!
posted by Secretariat at 7:25 PM on December 20, 2015

I was looking through http://www.thekitchn.com/spice-mixes-189368 and I think I'm personally most interested in the spices from the Middle East and Africa. What spices are y'all most interested in making?

thebotanyofsouls, when can your friends come?
posted by aniola at 10:56 AM on December 21, 2015

I'd be into mixing up some Za'atar- good for dipping fresh pita in!
posted by Secretariat at 1:45 PM on December 23, 2015

Does January 9 work for everyone?

Za'atar - thyme, sesame seeds, and sumac
or a more complicated version could have: oregano, basil, thyme, savory, marjoram, sumac, sesame seeds, salt, dried lemon peel. via http://www.ellenskitchen.com/recipebox/arabic/spicemix.html

I'm getting the impression there's general interest but not particular interest. That is, it's a nice idea but nobody else is like "oh man I have been wanting to try these 2-3 spice mixes forever and I never get around to it" so I'll put together a list of half a dozen or so spice mixes (including za'atar) and their ingredients, and then list off the ingredients needed.

Except, maybe, thebotanyofsouls, were you hoping to mix up a batch of the spices you use all the time already? If so, what are they? Let's be sure to include that!

Anyway, I'll work on that list tonight!
posted by aniola at 7:45 PM on December 23, 2015

So I based ingredients lists off of that kitchn link plus wikipedia, without doing too much hunting for individual recipes, and came up with the following.

Berbere - chili peppers, garlic, ginger, basil, korarima, rue, ajwain or radhuni, nigella, and fenugreek
Dukkah - hazelnuts, sesame seeds, coriander, and cumin.
Ras el Hanout - cardamom, cumin, clove, cinnamon, nutmeg, mace, allspice, dry ginger, chili peppers, coriander seed, peppercorn, sweet and hot paprika, fenugreek, and dry turmeric. Some spices may be particular to the region, such as ash berries, chufa, grains of paradise, orris root, monk's pepper, cubebs, dried rosebud, fennel seed or aniseed, galangal, long pepper.

Advieh - A Persian mix of dried rose petals and spices like cinnamon, cardamom, cloves, nutmeg, cumin
Baharat - Typically including black pepper, cumin, cinnamon, and cloves.
Za'atar - Thyme, sesame seeds, and sumac.

Karha (chai) - Tea leaves, Allspice, Cardamom, Cinnamon, Clove, Ginger root, Honey, Nutmeg, Peppercorn, Star anise, Vanilla and other spices.

Here's the list of ingredients used in the above spice mixes, with asterisks each time an ingredient repeats. Berbere uses most of the less-common ingredients, if we're not feeling *too* adventurous:
  • allspice*
  • ajwain
  • basil
  • cardamom**
  • chili peppers*
  • cinnamon***
  • clove***
  • coriander*
  • cumin***
  • fenugreek*
  • garlic
  • ginger**
  • hazelnuts
  • korarima
  • mace
  • nigella
  • nutmeg**
  • paprika, hot
  • paprika, sweet
  • peppercorn**
  • radhuni
  • rose petals
  • rue
  • sesame seeds*
  • star anise
  • sumac
  • tea leaves
  • thyme
  • turmeric
  • vanilla

posted by aniola at 2:14 PM on December 24, 2015

January 9th works for me. And yeah, I don't know which spice mixes I would like but don't use- because I don't know about them yet! So I'm ok with others just picking a few, and I can bring some components and learn about new mixes. I might have a few tiny jars I can bring for people to use too- in addition to some parchment for making packets.
posted by Secretariat at 3:54 PM on December 28, 2015

Without digging through the cupboards, I know we already have:
  • allspice
  • fresh basil
  • cinnamon
  • clove
  • coriander
  • cumin
  • fresh garlic
  • fresh ginger
  • hazelnuts
  • whole nutmeg (no grater)
  • tea leaves
  • turmeric
That leaves the following spices, some of which are common. (We probably have other spices, too.) Maybe y'all can say which of these you already have handy, and then we'll know which recipes make the most sense to pursue based on what we already have:

chili peppers*
paprika, hot
paprika, sweet
rose petals
sesame seeds*
star anise
vanilla bean
posted by aniola at 5:29 PM on December 28, 2015

I made it for 2pm but if anyone would prefer a different time and/or date, whenever's good for us.
posted by aniola at 6:12 PM on December 28, 2015

Someone from therooster.co might be coming, and has some spices from Pakistan and some black salt.
posted by aniola at 6:17 PM on December 30, 2015

If they come, sounds like they'll be bringing:

- salan masala
- vegetable bombay biryani
- sabzi
- dal masala
- kesuri methi
- zira
- som
- black salt
posted by aniola at 9:49 PM on December 30, 2015

Hmm... Several of the things on that list from the Rooster person sound more like mixes than individual spices. (masala, biryani)
posted by sibilatorix at 10:04 PM on December 30, 2015

They were sent to her from Pakistan, she's not sure what they are herself. Some of those look to me like the full-on dishes themselves, even. It's a mystery.

But! It looks like kesuri methi is dried fenugreek leaves, zira is cumin, and som is hard to do a search for and not on Wikipedia's list of Pakistani spices.

So... dried fenugreek leaves and cumin are knowns!

The other "maybe" person from therooster.co would bring paprika and turmeric.
posted by aniola at 10:52 PM on December 30, 2015

So... which spices should I bring to maximize everyone's enjoyment/take home of mixes? I have a variety of of herbs/spices. Of the ones listed:

dried basil
cardimom pods (not ground cardimom)
garlic powder
ginger powder
sweet smoked paprika (and some normal non-spicy paprika)
sesame seeds
star anise
dried thyme
posted by Secretariat at 4:35 PM on January 1, 2016

Another pair of "maybe"s from therooster.co! Grand total of 4 potential non-mefi people planning to come.

I just sent an email to the latest two from the rooster saying to just bring what they had in their cupboards and we'd figure it out day-of. I'm wondering if that might be easiest?
posted by aniola at 12:36 PM on January 2, 2016

Something came up- I'm not going to be able to make it this time. Mix well!
posted by Secretariat at 8:18 PM on January 8, 2016

Bah, for full on foddie/hipster cred you need to hand grind each spice fresh in your 30 pound mortar and pestle, and yes that's just sour grapes as I'm not even close enough to the other portland to make this kind of meetup.
posted by sammyo at 4:09 PM on January 9, 2016

We made ras el hanout, karha, and taco seasoning. We ended up a few ingredients short, so they were "just add cardamom!" type mixes, which is kind of neat.

Sorry you couldn't make it sammyo, it was a lot of fun!
posted by aniola at 5:13 PM on January 9, 2016

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