sampler of TSTE™ spices* to a lucky blog follower.
on Feb 14th!
Bacon, the ultimate man-food, especially when it’s tailgatin’ food. For the Big Game it’s no different, except we do it one better. And for our home-team TSTE™ stores, Annapolis and San Francisco, they’ve pulled out their best bacon recipes. Both the Candied Bacon and Chicken-Fried Cajun Bacon recipes are excellent nosh-on-these kind of dishes, not to mention they’re both versatile. Go ahead and make up a batch or two of each. Toss the candied bacon in with some nuts or caramel corn; the Cajun bacon is fantastic as a topping to Mac ‘n Cheese, or tossed into that big hearty salad.
Nothing says love like the way a home crowd gets behind their team, especially when that team is going all the way to the BIG game! TSTE™ San Francisco is sporting some delicious recipes this week (click here for their Chicken Fried Cajun Sausage Balls and Cream Gravy), and TSTE™ Annapolis (follow on Facebook here) is throwing out a nod to its neighboring city, Baltimore with their Garlic Poached Crab. Classic flavors tossed with linguine and vegetables, this is the perfect half time dish to serve up after all those spicy wings. We add a bit of adoro, or love, just to spice things up a bit!
Leave it to the Host City to really make a big game day memorable! New Orleans is be-decked and ready to welcome fans from all over the country and our own TSTE™ New Orleans store located in the French Quarter is about to throw one of the best parties in town! Stop in and say hello, and be greeted with a tasty little beverage we call the Super Fan! One taste and you’ll be asking for more, so our great
little NOLA store owner, Robin, is sharing her recipe. But jump on this today! You’ll need a few days to let all that delicious Blood Orange Smoothie Tea taste infuse your vodka!
It’s the time of year we’re all fans. The day that one BIG game defines everything from what we wear to what we eat. Here at The Spice & Tea Exchange, with stores in San Francisco, Annapolis, and New Orleans, no matter who you’re rooting for (or where you’re watching the game) we’ve got you covered. We’ve got a
whole lotta recipes and ideas straight from the home-teams and the host city, and a bunch of tips and tricks to help you get your game on! Everything is easy to make and it’s all SUPER-delicious for that one Sunday and that big game.
Give To: Italian food and travel enthusiasts; anyone interested in culinary and Roman history.
Stock up on: Classic seasonings: Sea Salts such as Brazilian Atlantic, La Baleine French Sea Salt, and finishing salts such as Cyprus Flake, Murray River, and Fleur de Sel. For the Fluke Crudo recipe that follows, Lime Frost Sea Salt is a must! Peppercorns to season, including Black, Green, and White. Classic pantry seasoning and spice staples like clove, nutmeg, allspice, cinnamon, and herbs such as thyme, sage, basil, and rosemary, etc.
Working the Pantry: Traveling the historic roads of Italy requires a traditional pantry. Then, again, giving that tradition the modern flair San Francisco is known for requires
a touch of the avant-garde. To satisfy both, stock up on blends that are rooted in traditional flavor profiles such as Italian Street Fair, Florida Sunshine and Pirate’s Bite for seasoning; experiment with blends and rubs, such as Chef Donna’s Adoro Blend, Tuscany Blend, and Vik’s Garlic Fix. Then, stretch your curiosity with things like Chef’s Choice Steak rub, or the interesting flavors of Espresso Steak rub and Butcher’s rub. Naturally, TSTE™ Extra Virgin Olive Oil and the four olive oil blends (Mushroom Paradise, Tomato Tarragon, Tuscany Blend, and Gourment Pepper) are a must!
Along with being National Hot Tea month (don’t forget to enter our great giveaway), January seems to be perfect for Comfort Food — you know, that rich, hearty, deeply satisfying kind of meal that warms you through and through. Welcoming comfort food season to your kitchen means opening the door to almost endless possibilities. That’s the best thing about comfort food: it’s as different as the people you are cooking for. Take this bean recipe, for example. More of a chili
or bean stew than a side dish, this comfort food classic is a fave of a good friend – who is Greek!
If you’re a fan of the monthly TSTE™ Newsletter, then no doubt you took to heart the invitation to discover a new favorite tea, this being National Hot Tea month and all. Our Newsletter and Social Media Editor extraordinaire suggests trying Coconut Oolong among a few others. I’ve long enjoyed the delicate coconut infusion with the fresh floral notes coming from the Bao Zhong oolong tea. It’s the perfect brew on those bright and sunny but still frigidly cold winter days! I’ve managed to find a few ways to wrap that delicious flavor into my cooking, and after a hearty comfort-food kind of meal, my Coconut Oolong Tea Ice Cream was the perfect light finish to the day. TSTE™ first introduced this recipe when the days were warm and iced tea was on our minds. But really, who doesn’t like ice cream regardless of the season?
Winter time is soup time and there’s nothing as warm and welcoming as a hearty bowl of hot soup. TSTE™ Kibbled Mushrooms give this soup a hearty base; the Italian-styled blends like TSTE Italian Street Fair, Chef Donna’s Adoro, or the Tuscany Blend – all perfect for mushrooms – add a nice flavor.
Recipe: Mushroom Barley Soup
2 cups cooked barley
1/4 cup TSTE™ Kibbled Mushrooms
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon butter
2 teaspoons TSTE™ Vik’s Garlic Fix
3 cups coarsely chopped onion
2 tablespoons dry Sherry
8 ounces baby Portobello mushrooms, sliced
8 ounces Cremini mushrooms, sliced
6 cups chicken stock
cup chopped carrots
4 to 6 sprigs of fresh thyme
Your favorite TSTE™ Italian seasoning, such as Italian Street Fair, Chef Donna’s Adoro, or Tuscany Blend
TSTE™ Florida Sunshine, to season
TSTE™ Extra Virgin Olive Oil, to finish
Rehydrate the TSTE™ Kibbled Mushrooms in a heatproof bowl with 2 cups boiling water. Set aside.
Place a large skillet over high heat. Add the olive oil, butter and TSTE™ Vik’s Garlic Fix. When butter is melted
and Vik’s mixed in, add the onions. Season with a few grinds of TSTE™ Florida Sunshine Grinder Blend, reduce the heat to low. Cook, stirring frequently, until onions are soft and caramelized, about 20 to 25 minutes. Add the Sherry and deglaze the pan. When the liquid is almost evaporated add the fresh mushrooms; toss to combine. Sauté the mixture for about 5 minutes until the mushrooms are soft. Remove from heat, cover and set aside.
Combine the chicken stock, TSTE™ Kibbled Mushrooms with the soaking liquid, carrots and thyme in a large pot. Cover and raise heat. Boil for about 10 minutes, until carrots are soft. Add the cooked barley, the onion and mushroom mixture and season with your favorite TSTE™ Italian seasoning. Simmer for about 10 minutes more until the flavors are well-combined and the soup is warmed through.
Serve in warmed soup bowls. For an Italian finish, drizzle a bit of TSTE™ Extra Virgin Olive Oil on top of each bowl.
As long as we’re using tea to infuse marshmallow fluff, why not infuse chocolate too. Tea infused chocolates aren’t new to our repertoire here on the blog; we’ve done this before. For National Hot Tea Month, though, we’re carrying through with the idea of pairing your tea time snacks with your tea of choice. Here, we’ve used the somewhat classic Earl Grey Crème to infuse dark chocolate. Drizzled over store-bought scones (ours have a touch of caramel) this is a satisfying measure of deliciousness at tea time. Chocolate loves notes of vanilla and cream, which makes TSTE™ Earl Grey Crème the perfect match. It happens to make a satisfying cup of afternoon tea, too.
For National Hot Tea month I couldn’t resist. Sipping tea is so apropos this time of year, not to mention
oh-so-civilized. I find it so easy to replace that afternoon cup of joe, or my icy soda pop, with a warm, relaxing spot of tea. And a snack! To make tea time complete I flavor my snacks with the same tea I’m drinking. Now, afternoon tea is a recipe for deliciousness: full-flavored tea that marries perfectly with my
cookies or scones. And, it’s so easy. You can do this!
In honor of one of our favorite month-long celebrations, The Spice & Tea Exchange is giving away a Boo Box Gift set full of tea to a lucky commenter on our blog! Just leave us a note on this post about why Hot Tea Month is your favorite month, and you’ll be entered for a chance to win our Tea Lover’s Boo
Cranberry Apple Tart Tea, an organic blend of fragrant and delicious apple, cranberry, and hibiscus!
Green Tropical, a blend of green te and tropical fruits, including strawberry and pineapple!
Kyoto Rice, a brothy infusion of Kyoto green tea leaves blended with popped and roasted rice!
Earl Grey, the classic English tea! Gold tips of organic black tea leaves are blended with the citrus nuance of Bergamot, for a smooth and rich cup.
*Winner selected by random drawing on January 31st.
As we conclude our Cookbook Giveaway
(read full details here) we’ve selected another classic recipe from The Essential James Beard Cookbook: 450 Recipes That Shaped the Tradition of American Cooking, by James Beard; edited by Rick Rodgers with John Ferrone. Old Fashioned Chicken Fricassee with Wagons Wheels is easy enough to make a part of your weekday meal planning, even though it’s a slow-cooked meal! But what we find favor with most, here, is how Beard shines as an instructor (read our full review here) for any home cook. In our last recipe, Chicken Sauté with Tomatoes, Beard very simply talks you through pan-roasting. In this fricassee recipe, Beard gives easy to understand directions on how to make a flawless gravy in a slow cooked classic preparation, the fricassee. The result, again, is spectacularly flavored chicken. With permission from St. Martin’s Press and James Beard House, The Spice & Tea Exchange® added its own contemporary flavor twist by using one of our most popular chicken seasonings, Crazy Chicken Blend.
As we near the end of our Cookbook Giveaway (=”http://www.spiceandtea.com/TheEssentialJamesBeardCookbookSweepstakes-ezp-54.html?chapter=2″ target=”_blank”>read full details here) we’ve selected two recipes from The Essential James Beard Cookbook: 450 Recipes That Shaped the Tradition of American Cooking, by James Beard; edited by Rick Rodgers with John Ferrone that are easy enough to make a part of your weekday meal planning. But these recipes also show Beard at his best, as an instructor (read our full review here). In our first recipe of the final two, Chicken Sauté with Tomatoes, Beard very simply talks you through pan-roasting. The result is spectacularly flavored, perfectly cooked, stove-top chicken. With permission from St. Martin’s Press and James Beard House, The Spice & Tea Exchange® added its own contemporary flavor twist by suggesting our two herbal and tomato blends, Tuscany Blend and Tomato Tarragon Blend.