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Sweet spices (Falconcy: this means you!)

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Author Topic: Sweet spices (Falconcy: this means you!)  (Read 10850 times)

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akhdar

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Sweet spices (Falconcy: this means you!)
« on: July 21, 2006, 10:21:40 PM »

Cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg, dates, garam masala (weird but true -- especially in banana bread), cocoa....
I am beginning to repeat too many spices in sweet dishes. I don't keep sugar at home and so I try to use spices to "sweeten" food items when I have a craving. But (especially cinnamon), these are beginning to be "ditto spices."

Oh, Falconcy, most elect of culinary delights, can you think of additional spices to be used to sweeten (as with yoghurt (or dairy shakes) or other foods which are tasty sweetened) dishes without too heavily relying on the above selection? As for savory, I can think of a thousand crazy combinations but no so much with the sweet. They seem to all jumble together perfectly melded (which is "imperfect," according to SLD tenets!)

Most gratefully,

Akh.
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falconcy

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Re: Sweet spices (Falconcy: this means you!)
« Reply #1 on: July 22, 2006, 03:19:29 AM »

Hmmm....


Mixed Spice would work, as would Vanilla, you might try sugar free syrups, crazy fruit combinations (even using the same ditto spices, it should still work if you vary the other ingredients) Mint would work too as would Cardamom. Also try Carob Powder or Carob Syrup for a chocolate type flavor. Good quality Maple Syrup (in moderation) and Honey would work too (Try a Greek Yogurt with Honey and Walnuts) Date Sugar. Allspice, Ginger, Anise and Fennel. Sesame and Poppy Seeds might work too. You could also go for a sweet and sour taste by using something sweet with a savoury spice.

I know some of these are sweeteners and not specifically spices, but the aim here is to make it taste different.
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Ann H

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Re: Sweet spices (Falconcy: this means you!)
« Reply #2 on: July 22, 2006, 04:31:46 AM »

Also "Pumpkin pie spice", stevia, fresh vanilla (if it's within budget). The bottled flavorings (such as are used in icings and cakes: like vanilla, etc) might be a life-saver: Frontier (sold in nat'l food stores) used to make raspberry, lemon, and several other suitable ones.

Good luck!
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akhdar

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Re: Sweet spices (Falconcy: this means you!)
« Reply #3 on: July 22, 2006, 02:34:21 PM »

I'm writing notes on all of your gracious replies!!!

Thank you both so much for the plethora of additional spices which I had not considered -- especially those in liquid form. None of these occurred to me. I have to stay away from honey, though...honey is my personal cocaine. I can't keep it in the house. In the Middle East, they sell jars of honey with assorted nuts on the inside. Mixed with tahini, I was like the living dead!

But vanilla and the spices are great clues as are the mixtures and blends.

As always, thank you, thank you, thank you.....

Akhdar
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frenata

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Re: Sweet spices (Falconcy: this means you!)
« Reply #4 on: July 22, 2006, 02:53:36 PM »

I recently dropped my bottle of Mexican vanilla extract in the sink and broke it.

Let us now observe a moment of silence for Frenata's Mexican vanilla extract.
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Ann H

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Re: Sweet spices (Falconcy: this means you!)
« Reply #5 on: July 22, 2006, 11:14:16 PM »

Quote
Let us now observe a moment of silence for Frenata's Mexican vanilla extract.
OK.

Moment over.

Saffron, Akhdar! Saffron!

:) And zareshk and the other sweet Persian/Arab spices...
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akhdar

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Re: Sweet spices (Falconcy: this means you!)
« Reply #6 on: July 23, 2006, 01:06:08 AM »

.....
.....
.....
.....
.....

Time's up.

Frenata, consider it an offering to either the SLD gods or (since it was Mexican Vanilla) maybe Quetzalcoatl....they are blessing your appetite suppression.

Ann H., Saffron is a brilliant stroke. It never occurred to me to use it in sweet dishes and I thank you.

Zareshk. I shall hunt this one out. There are three Persian stores around where I live. The name alone is enough to merit the trip!

Falconcy, at your wonderful suggestion, I bought some crushed fennel, today. Had some in yoghurt and now I am, well.....obsessed! I love it! I always keep the seeds around to crunch as sonf (I don't know if there is a word for sonf in English. The spice mixture [often with candies and always with fenugreek and fennel] that one eats as a digestif in India) but the crushed powder is something altogether different. So rich and full and intense. It has already expanded my repertoire considerably! I can't wait to try it on, well, everything!!!! I'll bet it is great in omelettes. How did I live without it for so long? Thank you! Thank you!

It is truly a blessing to have your culinary expertise and support on this forum.

Best,

Akhdar
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Ann H

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Re: Sweet spices (Falconcy: this means you!)
« Reply #7 on: July 23, 2006, 01:27:33 AM »

Ooooh, neat about the crushed fennel, Akhdar! I'll try that too! Was needing something for my yogurts, and fennel's great for ya, right?

You know, I'm thinking zareshk are Persian currants. Oops. What's that spice mix, then... Aha--ADVIEH! Here's a snagged recipe for it from online at a "down" site:

Quote
2 tablespoons dried rose petals
2 tablespoons ground cinnamon
2 tablespoons ground cardamom
1 tablespoon ground cumin

Thoroughly mix the ground spices and the rose petals. Larger quantities can also be mixed and stored in an airtight container.

From "A Taste of Persia" by Najmieh K. Batmanglij


Still your cinnamon and cardamom, but the rose and cumin should change the taste significantly.

There's also baharat, at http://www.recipezaar.com/79179 (These are all basically garam masala variants...) Worried about how much nutmeg goes in that baharat, though: too much nutmeg makes you crazy. Hey, mabe THAT's the problem in the Middle East! We need to tell them to cut down on the nutmeg, eh? :)
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akhdar

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Re: Sweet spices (Falconcy: this means you!)
« Reply #8 on: July 23, 2006, 11:45:03 PM »

Ann H,

This recipe sounds delicious and very romantic. Crushed rose petals...leave it to the Persians to turn dessert into poetry and spices into aphrodisiacs.

I love Persian currants, too, by the way. Especially in yoghurt soup!

It is wonderful to witness the inventiveness of culinary sweets in countries which had not yet been introduced to the questionable delights of sugar cane. Cinnamon, cardomom, nutmeg, and rose petals! Food for royalty.

By the by, my understanding is that nutmeg has no hallucinagenic qualities unless ingested in large quantities (or "snorted"). Taken as a spice, it (and parley and star anise which are composed of the same ingredient) are quite harmless.

But I know that you know that.

Hope all is well in the tropics!

Akhdar
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KiwiRed

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Re: Sweet spices (Falconcy: this means you!)
« Reply #9 on: October 07, 2006, 06:24:57 PM »

On the subject of sweet spices (however indirectly), I visited an Indian grocery store this week (mmmm, fresh spices) and found something called Mukhwas, which seem to be an after-meal snack/breath freshener based on fennel seeds and other spices (and they're very colourful).  Sadly my budget wasn't able to stretch far enough at the time to buy a couple of packs to sample, but I'm keeping them in mind for next week.
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"'Impossible' is not a scientific term."  - Vanna Bonta


akhdar

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Re: Sweet spices (Falconcy: this means you!)
« Reply #10 on: November 21, 2006, 11:48:56 PM »

You know, I'll bet that Mukhwas and Sonf are the same animal...or close. A friend of mine has a huge container from England -- with clever compartments for about twelve distinct combinations. Too fabulous!

KiwiRed, may your budget expand and your waistline shrink!

(If that is, indeed, what you want. Haven't read your stats as the membership on this site has exploded into the stratosphere since I was by last)

Best,

Akhdar
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Lony

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Re: Sweet spices (Falconcy: this means you!)
« Reply #11 on: January 25, 2007, 02:03:31 PM »

I'm drooling just reading this thread! :D 8)
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falconcy

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Re: Sweet spices (Falconcy: this means you!)
« Reply #12 on: January 27, 2007, 05:01:12 AM »

You should see the spices I can get over here in Dubai, Gordon Bennet, even Seth's jaw would drop, ...and I didn't even make the spice souk yet  8)
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girljedi

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Re: Sweet spices (Falconcy: this means you!)
« Reply #13 on: January 28, 2007, 06:12:22 PM »

Too bad you can't ship some to us!  What a bill that would be!   :D

Glad you're having fun and enjoying Dubai!
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