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One of the sneakily expensive parts of being an adult is building your own spice collection. amirite?

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Coeurdemonstre1s avatar Money & Economics
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Do you have space to grow some herbs? perhaps even just a few in the kitchen windowsill. Brightens up the kitchen and supplies you with year round freshness for any dish.

The spice must flow.

Josh Rogan says hi

Openeyess avatar Openeyes Yeah You Are +7Reply

And maintaining it! Highly recommend hitting up LA Marts, H Marts, Or any other non American grocery. You can get 1qt of garlic powder for 5$ vs 1/2c McCormick name brand canisters etc.

Larny2019s avatar Larny2019 Yeah You Are +6Reply
@Larny2019 And maintaining it! Highly recommend hitting up LA Marts, H Marts, Or any other non American grocery. You can get...

The best advice is that if you're buying your spices from a white person you're doing it wrong

@Larny2019 And maintaining it! Highly recommend hitting up LA Marts, H Marts, Or any other non American grocery. You can get...

I hit up an Indian market close by; they're so clutch for spices (and most other things you would normally get at a regular grocery store tbh)

What are the first 6-8 spices you should buy to have a good variety?

@ImMemeLord What are the first 6-8 spices you should buy to have a good variety?

Not sure about what spices exactly, but one of the best pieces of advice I got was to move to buying whole spices when possible and buy a mortar and pestle to crush as needed. The flavors are way brighter and really elevate what you're cooking. And if you can find a Middle Eastern/Indian/Asian/etc. store, they likely carry good quality whole spices at a good cost.

If someone who's a chef can expand on this, that would be great haha

@Coeurdemonstre1 Not sure about what spices exactly, but one of the best pieces of advice I got was to move to buying whole spices...

I believe it throughly. Sort of how like canned goods don't taste as good as fresh stuff.

I have never seen things like fresh cumin, fresh nutmeg, fresh coriander, fresh paprika, or anything like that though, anywhere.

bertlps avatar bertlp Yeah You Are +3Reply
@bertlp I believe it throughly. Sort of how like canned goods don't taste as good as fresh stuff. I have never seen...

It's worth looking at the distinction between spices and herbs.

Herbs are plant leaves so you can get a fresh or dried version, with the biggest difference being rapidly disappearing volatile chemicals like many polyphenols that give the fresh version a more "plant-y, herb-y" flavor. The less volatile chemicals such around longer but eventually fade too, which is why herbs more than a year or so old lose so much flavor.

Spices in comparison are made from parts other than leaves, usually seeds. They don't have as many of those quickly disappearing flavor compounds so there's rarely a benefit to having fresh versions that spoil more quickly. There are exceptions though like ginger, garlic, turmeric, or green peppercorns where the fresh version is distinct enough that it's worth having more than just a dried version.

There's more nuance to it but that's the general gist. Coriander you gave as one example is actually the seeds of cilantro. So there is a fresh component from that same plant but they have different enough tastes to not be interchangeable. Paprika is made from red bell pepper skins so it's available as a fresh ingredient, but wouldn't be useable in that form. It'd be tough and mostly flavorless, so you need to dry and sometimes smoke it to concentrate the flavor enough to be useful.

I hope that helps a little and I wasn't just blathering into the void.

Unaviables avatar Unaviable Yeah You Are +4Reply
@ImMemeLord What are the first 6-8 spices you should buy to have a good variety?

im sure opinions will vary but imo:

  • cumin
  • cinnamon
  • paprika
  • nutmeg
  • coriander
  • cardamom
  • bay leaves
  • cayenne (omit if you dislike spice)
  • garlic powder (i use fresh garlic but if you don't, this is a good replacement)

if you want dried herbs:

  • rosemary
  • thyme
  • oregano
  • sage
  • dill
  • most of the above are in a "poultry blend" or "italian seasoning) herb mix, so you could just get that
@dankXD im sure opinions will vary but imo: cumin cinnamon paprika nutmeg coriander cardamom bay leaves -...

Makes me think of Marge Simpson, "oh a spice rack.. 8 spices? There must be doubles" or however the quote goes.

@dankXD im sure opinions will vary but imo: cumin cinnamon paprika nutmeg coriander cardamom bay leaves -...

Thank you, I only basically have Black pepper, basil, and paprika. Meaning I only have one out of 12 of those

@Jordantom16 Thank you, I only basically have Black pepper, basil, and paprika. Meaning I only have one out of 12 of those

oh yeah, basil is great but it's one i only ever use fresh. i'm sure dried has its uses but fresh basil is worth it, such a clean fresh taste. i didn't include pepper because by default black pepper and salt are a must in every kitchen.

@Jordantom16 Thank you, I only basically have Black pepper, basil, and paprika. Meaning I only have one out of 12 of those

I've vehemently disagree with this person's recommendations, but obviously it's regional. It really depends on what you like to eat. I've pretty much never used cardamom in my life. I would say onion powder, garlic powder, cumin, chili powder, red pepper flakes, basil and oregano will cover a lot of bases. This would be good for Mexican, Tex-Mex, Cajun, Italian. Throw in some ginger and sesame oil for asian.

piromysls avatar piromysl Yeah You Are +3Reply
@piromysl I've vehemently disagree with this person's recommendations, but obviously it's regional. It really depends on what...

A lot of my cooking depends entirely on garlic, onion, salt and pepper. Red pepper flakes are essential if you cook with the bare minimum.

Framie1s avatar Framie1 Yeah You Are +1Reply

At first I balked, but I am not a chicken. These spices are for chicken. Now i have garam masala and cumin in my spice cabinet.

True. So, so true.

Pro tip: if you spend the $20-$30 on a spice rack with a bunch of containers (or just buy a bunch of refillable containers without the spin-spin) you save money buying bulk in spices you use often.

Get one of those lazy Susan's with the built in spice holders. $20. Spices included.

Find your nearest middle eastern, Indian, or Asian store. They have the best spices and the best prices on this spices.

I also buy all my spices at Aldi

Openeyess avatar Openeyes Yeah You Are +5Reply

I took all my spices with me when I left my ex's place. Find someone else to spice up your life, pal

Water-into-weeds avatar Water-into-weed Yeah You Are +4Reply
@Water-into-weed I took all my spices with me when I left my ex's place. Find someone else to spice up your life, pal

I wish I'd done that. I got a couple dozen jars for free when I worked at a grocery store and didn't appreciate how expensive they were until I had to buy them all again.

Openeyess avatar Openeyes Yeah You Are +4Reply

Aldi has cheap ass spices, as does trader joes. In my city we have a few spice shops where they are much cheaper than supermarkets.

piromysls avatar piromysl Yeah You Are +4Reply

Essential though.

LPT buy in bulk online and it makes for great gift giving. You can get primo organic spices by the pound for the price of the tiny grocery store mc kormic over dried garbage.

And lightbulbs

@Smrncs And lightbulbs

Led bulbs last for years, and they're about less than $2 a bulb

@Smrncs And lightbulbs

Lightbulbs, cleaning supplies...I had absolutely no reason to think that the little things don't add up, but they sure do!

This is more of a seasoning recommendation, but my pantry always has Morton's Nature's Seasoning, McCormick Montreal Steak seasoning, and Cavendars Greek seasoning. Want the best salmon you ever had? Season it with a 50/50 mix of Cavendars and Montreal, and a generous amount of olive oil.

I buy my spices in bulk and its actually really cheap you can bag them or keep them in old jars

Longsankss avatar Longsanks Yeah You Are +3Reply

Lol, that an video games. It adds up!😂

Penney's Spices 4 lyfe. Spice buying at 40 is exhilarating.

When the recipe calls for some stupid spice you've never heard of and will never see again until you throw it out 10 years later

Dude, don't get me started on saffron...

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