Carolyn's Daily Posts: 2011

March 22, 2011

A Fortune of Spices in my Kitchen Cupboard



     Allspice. Cinnamon. Cumin. Fennel. Majoram. Mint. Nutmeg. Paprika. Peppercorns.  Saffron. Sage. Tarragon. Vanilla bean.

     I’m scanning a kitchen shelf containing herbs and spices—the above are only some of them. There are also many blends, like the fish seasoning, that I see.

     When I look on my counters I see fresh onion and garlic.

     I wouldn’t be surprised to find any—or all of—these items in any kitchen I inspect. All, that is, except saffron. This is the most expensive spice and does not have common usage in the United States, except perhaps by mid-Easterners and Asians living in this country.

     The possession of these products hasn’t historically been this common.  However, they have always been important enough to mankind that kingdoms were won and lost for their possession—and, as always with something that valuable, men risked their lives in its trade.

     Sinbad the sailor voyaged from Basta to an island where he sought pepper, cloves, and cinnamon. He sold these items at a handsome profit in Baghdad. By the time the items reached Europe, their cost was fantastic.

     Expensive? people complained to the crafty Arab masters of this lucrative trade.

     Not at all. Think of the perils.



Herbs and Spices Defined

Herbs & Spices: Their Role in History

Rosemary: The Herb


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