How to cook with spices

Our love affair with spices knows no limits. But understanding how to cook with spices and putting your spice collection to use can be an uphill struggle. I am no stranger to buying yet another exotic spice for a single use and then letting it fester at the back of the cupboard! See my tips on how to [manage] your spice collection.

With an orderly collection in place, here’s how best to use them:

  • It’s all about sequence with spices – what you add when makes the biggest difference. If you’re new to this, always follow the recipe
  • Invest in a pestle and mortar, which allows you to control the texture you grind a spice to, and a spice grinder for making fine blends in minutes (a removable bowl is best for easy cleaning)
  • Understand the flavour profile of each spice broadly so you can get creative in the kitchen
  • Spices do have strong aromas. If Eau de Spice is not your thing, wear a shower cap to protect your hair and cook in old clothes – aprons don’t stand a chance. Close the kitchen door when cooking if possible and then air the kitchen after. Good quality candles will prevent aromas from lingering well after the meal has been cooked and eaten
  • If you end up with too much spice, batch make spice mixes – they make brilliant gifts!

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