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Spice Hamper

£50.00

In a nutshell: Six of the best spices guaranteed to add some exciting flavour to all sorts of dishes.

Épices de Cru Alleppy Turmeric 
This ground Turmeric is the best we've tasted. It adds some wonderful colour and flavour to curries, meat and veggie stews.

The Spice Coast port of Alleppey has been known for its turmeric for centuries. With its deep orange colour Alleppey turmeric is surprisingly flavourful. This Indian turmeric contains high levels of curcumin, the resinous colouring agent of turmeric. Used almost exclusively in combination with other spices, turmeric gives Caribbean and Indian curries their warm, yellow colour and flavour. The orange rhizome is dried until it becomes so dense that it could break the blades of most grinders and mills. this unadultarated ground turmeric adds wonderful colour and flavour to curries, meat and veggie stews.

Along with being an excellent flavouring and colouring spice, turmeric is known in Aryvudic medicine as an antiseptic, an antioxidant and an anti-inflammatory. Recent Western medical studies have indicated that consuming a combination of turmeric and black pepper on a regular basis stems the incidence of certain cancers.

Épices de Cru Herbes de Provence Pork & Veal
A great mix, with added rosemary and sage, to bring out the best flavour in all kinds of pork and veal dishes. The added rosemary and sage in this mix adds extra flavour punch to pork and veal dishes. Great with all veal and pork cuts especially with braised dishes, grills and roasts. The mix is also good added to tomato-based sauces to intensify their flavour. Combine with ground black pepper, red wine vinegar and a little olive oil to make a cracking marinade for pork chops or add to pork meatball mixes. Combine with sea salt and rub over a pork shoulder before roasting or add to a simple breadcrumb stuffing with lemon zest and garlic for butterflied pork shoulder or loin to make a simple porchetta-style roast.

Épices de Cru Dukkah
Combine this famous Middle Eastern sesame and spice mix with almonds and olive oil for a brilliant table dip.   

This popular Egyptian, and Middle Eastern, dip came to my attention many years ago in Southern Australia. Russell Jeavons, a brilliantly eccentric, and still maverick, chef built a brick wood-fired oven in a cottage in sleepy Willunga and opened a pizza restaurant. Diners were also treated to impromptu tango evenings as the pizzas flew out of the oven and you drank the excellent local McLaren Vale wines. As you waited for the pizzas to arrive, you dunked freshly baked bread into small bowls of extra virgin olive oil and his homemade dukkha made with the local almonds and fruity oil.

Our Dukkah, takes its inspiration from the classic Egyptian blend of sesame, coriander seeds, cumin, turmeric and pepper. It is delicious when ground with almonds or other at a ratio of 2:1 almonds to our Dukkah spice mix, then just add the best extra-virgin olive you can find (maybe something from our site?!). Dip your bread in the oil, then in the dukkah and you have a perfect appetiser, snack, or healthy breakfast if you're in the Middle East. You can also use it to dry rub or crust poultry or fish before pan-frying.

Épices de Cru Madagascar Black Pepper 
Classic top-notch Madagascan black peppercorns perfect as a table pepper for your grinder that will give bite to your everyday dishes.These Madagascan peppercorns are the highest grade available and come from an early harvest of exceptional quality and flavour. A very dark black pepper with bite and perfect as an everyday table pepper. 

Safrà del Montsec Saffron 1/2g
Great Taste 2019 2-star award-winner
Finest-quality, organically grown Catalan saffron, hand-picked from the early-morning fields, gently dried over an oak fire for maximum flavour.

Back in the Middle Ages, Catalonia’s hot, dry summers and cold winters helped to make it the centre of the world’s saffron production. Now, thanks to the vision of one young farming couple, this ancient tradition is being revived.

For the past 5 years, the husband-and-wife team of Jaume Casado Carulla and Magda Plazas Figueroa have been producing coupe-grade saffron – AKA, the very best quality – from their masia farmhouse in the Pyrenean foothills.

The delicate crocuses are hand-picked in October, when the early-morning mists ensure that the flowers will still be closed – an essential factor when it comes to maintaining the quality of their pistils, the crocus’s female reproductive organs that will become saffron.

After harvest, the flowers are unbladed – the painstaking process of individually separating by hand each vibrant-red pistil from its parent bloom. These pistils are then dried in front of a holm-oak fire, which imbues the saffron with its subtle, smoky aroma.

The result of this attention to detail is a premium saffron with a vivid fragrance and intense depth of flavour. Given its extremely high quality and flavour, less of the pistils are needed for cooking purposes which more than justifies the price.

Grand Cru de Batz Gros Sel Gris
Great Taste 2018 1-star award-winner
Rare sea salt, hand-harvested in the historic marshes of Brittany’s western coast.

Salt has been harvested in the windswept tidal marshes of Guérande for more than a millennium. Grand Cru de Batz are the upholders of this proud Breton tradition – producing a unique range of small-batch, hand-harvested salts in much the same way as would have been done 1,000 years ago.

The salt is naturally created from the sea water that becomes trapped in the patchwork of interconnected salt pans that dot the marshes. The warm summer winds cause the water to evaporate, leaving its salt crystals behind.Unlike fleur de sel, which forms on the top of the water, gros sel gris comes into contact with the argile – the mineral-rich clay at bottom of the salt pan. It is this that gives it its grey tinge as well as its high magnesium content.

The salt is carefully removed by a paludier (or salt-marsh worker) using his las, a specially designed rake with a 5-metre blade. This precious harvest is naturally dried to preserve its high mineral content, before being hand-sorted to remove impurities. 

Finally, it’s sealed in an airtight tin to protect it unique fragrance, before finding its way to the best restaurant kitchens in France – and, now, to you.

 

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