Before you buy a spice blend in a bottle, look at the label. If you have a reasonably well-stocked pantry, most of what comes in a pre-packaged spice blend can be reproduced with what you have. Try blending your own, or at least putting those spices you love cooking with next to one another in a “spice kit” you can reach for easily to add some flavour to your food.
The goal of the spice kit is twofold: first, thinking ahead about which spices you’d like to use together helps you put together a flavour profile in your head that can go well with just about anything. If you like spicy things, make a blend with red pepper flake or cayenne pepper. If you prefer savoury, maybe a little black pepper or paprika are good to keep together.
The folks at Serious Eats suggest you pick up a masala dabba for your spice mix, which makes it even easier to use (although it definitely takes up some space) or even re-use a cookie tin to keep your collection intact and in reach. The end result is you’ll have a mix for whatever flavour you want and you don’t have to root through your spice cabinet every night when you start cooking.
Do you keep your spices together, or make your own spice mixes? How do you store them? Share your suggestions in the comments below.
Spice Hunting: Make Spice Kits for Fast, Creative Cooking [Serious Eats]