DIY Spice Blends November 09 2015

Have you been in the middle of cooking only to find you’ve run out of a spice blend your recipe calls for? Not to worry - there’s a good chance you have its components sitting in your pantry already.

Should you find yourself in a bind, take a look at the below popular spice blends and how you can re-create them:

Chili Powder: Ideal for soups, sauces, dry rubs and marinades - if you happen to run out at home, try combining 2 tablespoons paprika, 1 teaspoon garlic powder, 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper (may need more if you want to increase the heat), 1 teaspoon onion powder, 1 teaspoon  dried oregano, and 2 teaspoon ground cumin.

Herbs de Provence: Either in a marinade or as a dried rub, herbes de provence make a great seasoning for grilled meats, fish, and vegetables. This blend typically includes: 3 tablespoons dried oregano, 3 tablespoons thyme leaves, 1 teaspoon basil leaves, 1 teaspoon sage, 3 tablespoons savory, 1 teaspoon rosemary.

Garam Masala: A hallmark of many Southeast Asian dishes - Garam Masala is traditionally made from whole spices, toasted and ground. But if you are in a pinch, try mixing 1 tablespoon ground cumin, 1 teaspoon ground coriander, 1 teaspoon ground cardamom, 1 teaspoon ground pepper, 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon, 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves, 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg, and 1/4 teaspoon ground allspice. 

Curry Powder: Used in soups, sauces, rice - or really anything else you’d like to add some flavor to! Combine 3 tablespoons paprika, 2 teaspoons ground cumin, 2 teaspoons ground fennel seed, 2 teaspoons ground yellow mustard, 2 teaspoons ground red pepper, 1 tablespoon ground coriander, 1 tablespoon ground turmeric, 1 teaspoon ground cardamom, 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon, 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves.

Cajun Spice: This blend if good for more than just gumbo and jambalaya - use at as a dry run for chicken, fish, steak, or pork or give your popcorn or fries a kick! Mix 1 teaspoons salt, 2 teaspoons garlic powder, 2 teaspoons paprika, 1 teaspoon black pepper, 1 teaspoon onion powder, 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper, 1 teaspoon dried oregano, 1 teaspoon dried thyme, 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes.

Making your own spice and seasoning blends gives you complete freedom in how much or how little of a spice you want included. Feel free to experiment with the above recipes until you find a mix that you like best!

When taste is everything, La Flor is all you need to transform your everyday meal into an extraordinary culinary delight. Shop our selection of spices, herbs, and blends on the web - keep it spicy America!

DIY Spice Infused Oil September 15 2015

Whether you’re looking to create an infused oil for personal use or are getting a jump start on DIY holiday gift planning, look no further than your pantry to create a delicious and flavorful spice infused oil! Not only are they easy to make, but they can quickly jazz up salad dressings, go great in a stir fry, and much more.

Generally, you will need about 2 tablespoons of spices per cup of oil you choose. Oil can be flavored using whole or ground spices, either on the stovetop or in the oven as detailed below:

  • Stovetop: Heat your oil (like olive, peanut, grapeseed, or avocado oil) in a medium saucepan with selected spices for about 5 minutes - or until the mixture is slightly bubbling. Remove from heat to cool.
  • In-oven: In an oven safe bowl or pot, heat oil and spices at 300°F for 40 minutes. Remove from oven and allow it to cool.

Once your oil mixture is cool from the above methods, strain it using a fine-mesh sieve lined with a cheesecloth, then funnel the liquid into your bottle. Infused oils should last about a month when stored properly(refrigerated) so if making for a gift, be sure to include use by date and storage instructions!

For some inspiration - try infusing your oil with your favorite La Flor spice, like crushed red pepper, achiote annatto seeds, anise seeds, coriander, cumin, paprika, cinnamon, or fennel seeds!