About think spice

A spice is a dried seed, fruit, root, bark or vegetative substance used in nutritionally insignificant quantities as a food additive for the purpose of flavouring, and indirectly for the purpose of killing and preventing growth of pathogenic bacteria. Many of the same substances have other uses in which they are referred to by different terms….e.g., in food preservation, medicine,religious rituals,cosmetics,perfumery or as vegetables. For example, turmeric is also used as a preservative; garlic as a vegetable and nutmeg as a recreational drug. Spices are distinguished from herbs, which are leafy, green plant parts used for flavouring purposes. Herbs such as basil or oregano, may be used fresh and are commonly chopped into smaller pieces; spices , however, are dried and usually ground into a powder. Spices have been prominent in human history since their inception. Spices were among the most valuable items of trade in the ancient and the medieval world. The culinary use of spices originated in the Indian sub continent and South-East Asia. Spices were among the most luxurious products in the middle ages, the most common being black pepper, cinnamon,nutmeg,ginger and cloves. They were all imported from plantations from Asia and Africa and were extremely expensive. The value of these goods(a 1000 tons) was the equivalent of a year’s supply of grain for 1.5 million people!!! A quote from ‘The Lure and lore of spices’ seems so apt… “If the appearance of spices were to reflect their real importance in the history of the world, the bottles of spices would be filled with bright glittery substances, diamonds, rubies, emeralds or gold would be appropriate.When you opened the bottle, a poof of vibrantly coloured, mystically fragrant, magical smoke would slowly billow softly throughout the room”. -(wiki) Spices, both in it’s fresh and powdered form, are an integral part of my kitchen. I possibly couldn’t survive without them…well, that may be a bit far fetched…but honestly, spices do occupy a place of pride in my kitchen. Each of my recipes demand at least one spice. I think that can be said of most Indian kitchens like mine…but even in other kitchens, spices of some form or the other is usually existent. So I was just wondering,

  • Firstly, how important are spices in your kitchen…are they an absolute necessity or just something which you would just pick up once in a blue moon, or perhaps, never!!.
  • Secondly, there are some spices in particular that we can’t do without and some that are there just to add a special touch. So, in your case, which are the ones that fall into these two categories.
  • Thirdly, while buying spices, do you go for any particular variety…how brand conscious are you… do you get the supplies from some faraway place or just happy to lift it up from the supermarket.
  • Fourthly, apart from cooking, does a particular spice have other uses in your household…
  • Fifthly, does a particular spice hold any fond memories… perhaps, a dish cooked by someone special…

At present, these are a few of the thoughts that have come to my mind…probably there must be many others…. However, if reading them has already got your head nodding, and you’re already reaching for your favourite spice, then gear up to share all your feelings….in fact all your experiences, cooking or otherwise, for… …I am planning to host a monthly event centred around ’spice’ (what else). Each month, I will choose a spice, and participants have to blog about it during that particular month and before the deadline… if possible, please try to make the particular spice of the month stand out in the dish… for it’s all about honouring their individuality. This is going to be my first step into the world of event-hosting, and I must say that I’m a bit apprehensive…hence, treading very gingerly on this unfamiliar territory. But then, with all you wonderful people out there, I know, I’ll have a helping hand nearby whenever I’m wavering. As for the guidelines ( please refer to the following for the months hosted at Sunita’s world only. For the other months, refer to the respective guest host’s blog), here goes-

  1. Post a recipe of any kind, using the chosen spice, also, in any form you desire (seeds, powder, bark, etc.) … it would be really nice if the spice could hold it’s ground in the dish and is not overpowered by many others….after all, the post is supposed to be dedicated specially to them….other spices will have their turn in due course. Feel free to share all your thoughts and information on the chosen spice.
  2. Include a link back to this post for the benefit of your readers and future references.
  3. Email me your entry with your name, a picture,if any (250 pixels wide, height does not matter) of your dish and the permalink of your recipe by or before the announced deadline to sunitasworld@yahoo.co.uk with the subject -Think Spice…think(the name of the spice).
  4. Non -Bloggers are also welcome to participate. Just e-mail me your entry with a picture to sunitasworld@yahoo.co.uk
  5. The round ups will be posted during the first week of the following month.
  6. Feel free to use the logo.

Please refer to the sidebar for the current spice of the month.

{ 6 comments… read them below or add one }

1 sunita November 26, 2008 at 11:14 pm

60 comments:

sra said…

Hey, I’ve been thinking about something like this – I’m in! Soon, if not this month.
03 August 2007 13:08
sunita said…

Sra, I would love to have you join whenever you can…:)
03 August 2007 13:43
Coffee said…

cool idea!! me likes it! :) i am on for it.. :)
03 August 2007 14:17
sunita said…

Coofee, glad you’re on…me likes that;)
03 August 2007 14:37
Asha said…

Sunita,do you really think I will miss an event like this?:)
I think Nupur’s A to Z has ended with Z ,so I will send it to you instead!!
Yippee!I like Cumin!:))
03 August 2007 15:25
Mishmash ! said…

Sunita…all the best….let me see what I can come up with :)

Shn
03 August 2007 15:28
Sharmi said…

hey was thinking of something like this. this is really nice. count me in!!
03 August 2007 15:31
sunita said…

Asha, I’d love to receive your entry…or should I say, entries?;)…btw, hope everything is fine on the ‘eyes’ front.
03 August 2007 16:01
sunita said…

Shn,thanks, for I’ll need lots of wishes…a newbie in this field…would love to receive something from you:)
03 August 2007 16:03
sunita said…

Sharmi, great minds think alike ;) …only I beat you to it:D…am counting you in :)
03 August 2007 16:04
Laavanya said…

Great Idea Sunita. Spices are so wonderful and I love the flavor of cumin – smoky.
03 August 2007 16:19
sunita said…

laavanya,nice to have you over…I too love cumin.
03 August 2007 16:29
Sig said…

Good luck with the hosting Sunita, it is a great idea! I’m in… just need to figure out what to make, but I have till 25th right? :D
03 August 2007 20:02
sunita said…

Sig, thanks for the wishes would love to have your participation…and yes, you have till the 25th.
03 August 2007 20:32
Saju said…

That’s a great idea! Count me in, (and nearer to Christmas when I make the gift jars; I will send you one, if you send me you address!)
04 August 2007 10:22
sunita said…

Saju, would love to count you in…and hey.. I was just joking!!!!!!!…not that I’d mind receiving one ;)
04 August 2007 10:46
Bharathy said…

Wow!Nice place…Thanx for leading.:)..Good effort with the monthly event!!
Welcome to my place Sunita..:)
04 August 2007 11:51
sunita said…

bharathy, thanks…nice of you to drop by…
04 August 2007 12:16
Vcuisine said…

That’s a lovely theme sunita. Will definitely come up with a new dish to support this event. Why not? After all it is my passion. Appreciate your interest in organizing this event. It will be a real hit event among our friends. Viji
05 August 2007 05:40
sunita said…

Viji, thank you so much for the words of encouragement…looking forward to your participation.
05 August 2007 06:45
Cynthia said…

Congratulations on creating and hosting this spicy event (corny I know). I’m in, if not this month, definitely next month.
05 August 2007 23:47
Roopa said…

hmm great idea! yeah spice event sound interesteing and cool! cumin excellent choice to star with count me in :)
06 August 2007 02:16
sunita said…

Cynthia, thanks…you’re welcome to join anytime.
06 August 2007 07:13
sunita said…

Roopa,thanks…definitely counting you in the fun.
06 August 2007 07:13
N said…

hey Sunita,

Chanced upon your blog.. Great idea for an event.. Will definitely join in, although with a simple recipe.

have put ur event in the ‘events blogs list’ in my site.. hope that helps bring in more contributors..

Good luck, and let me know if you are looking to include others to host the event..
06 August 2007 08:09
sunita said…

N, welcome to my world…good to know that you’re willing to contribute…and it is always great to enjoy the simpler things in life…thanks for the wishes and I’ll definitely let you know if I have any other plans in the future.
06 August 2007 09:04
Vanamala said…

Hi

Gr8 idea !! definitely i’m in sunita :)
06 August 2007 17:59
sunita said…

Vanamala,welcome to my world…I would really love to receive your entry…
06 August 2007 19:29
Raaga said…

Great event Sunita. I use a lot of spices in my special cooking, but my day to day cooking uses very very little :-) But cumin I use in everything. Love this event and maybe it will make me bring out spices I’ve never tried before.

Good luck.
09 August 2007 06:24
Mona said…

Hello Sunita, i’m a newbie and came across your blog, your theme for the event looked good to me, spices !! and i look forward to participate in this event. You will soon see my mail in your account with my entry for this event. U’ve a good blog here. Keep up the good work.

http://www.monaafzal.wordpress.com
09 August 2007 15:57
sunita said…

raaga, glad you liked the idea of th e event…would love your participation.
10 August 2007 15:07
sunita said…

Mona,thanks and welcome to my world…looking forward to your entry.
10 August 2007 15:12
ramkumari said…

Hello Sunita ,am new to ur page too ..crossed over from foodie hope .
I have posted a recipe ..but am not sure if it is ok it uses cumin as a medicinal product .
I loved doing it .
Thnx
13 August 2007 15:25
sunita said…

Ramkumari,I’ve received your entry and it is absolutely fine…glad you could join.
14 August 2007 20:21
Suganya said…

Thats a nice event. But there are only 10 days left this month. Will meet you next month, if I am not able to make it this time.
15 August 2007 18:36
sunita said…

Suganya,no problem…join the bandwagon whenever you can :)
16 August 2007 18:02
Namratha said…

Hi Sunita, a lovely unique event:)All of us are here to make it a success so don’t worry. I had sent you a mail with my recipe, now I have my own blog,will be posting it there too. Will mail you the links today. Just wanted to stop by and drop a line…ciao!
16 August 2007 22:32
Dee said…

Hey, thats a wonderful event. will surely try to participate
16 August 2007 22:38
SPICE OF LIFE said…

hey,

I am a newbie to this world and just happened to come to ur blog….cumin is a spice which i use in everything :-) will have to think of something which has the distinct taste of cumin though …will try to come up with something … :-)
20 August 2007 04:45
sunita said…

Namratha, welcome to th efood blogosphere…I’ve already received your entry :)
20 August 2007 12:20
sunita said…

dee, thanks…would love to have you participate…
20 August 2007 12:20
sunita said…

spice of life, looking forward to your entry..nice to have you over ;)
20 August 2007 12:21
SMN said…

Hi Sunita,nice Blog you have and Congrats for the award of Rocking Grl.. Nice spice u hv choosen thank ..
20 August 2007 12:27
sunita said…

SMN, welcome to my world and thanks…nice to have you over.
20 August 2007 19:09
Elle n Chikki said…

Just chanced upon your blog. Sounds like a cool idea – will try to participate this month.
21 August 2007 18:07
Mansi Desai said…

Hi Sunita,

Too late to enter, but I’ll be there next time:) Cumin is one of my fav spices!
27 August 2007 21:04
Bhawna said…

Already late, is there anyway to know about all events as a new blogger.
I miss it .
01 September 2007 23:06
Nags said…

hey sunita, cant wait to start off with mustard for this month :)

let me know if i can help in any way and if you are looking for others to host in the following months :)

great job!!
04 September 2007 04:30
Coffee & Vanilla said…

I like idea of this event a lot.
I will take part next month as I don’t really have idea how to use mustard seeds.

Greetings from London, Margot
14 September 2007 13:56
SHUBHA said…

this sounds nice….. will surely send in my entry….. hey send me the musatrd round up link…please
02 October 2007 23:46
Revathi said…

I sent a recipe for saffron rice I made for my pregnant friend. I hope you get my email
20 October 2007 22:28
A kitchen scientist & a white rat hubby!!! said…

my my, somany saffron rice, here…so, i suppose you can have mine too!!

http://thisishowthingsturnouttobe.blogspot.com/2007/10/from-yours-to-mine-modified-versions.html

this is my entry..hope u like it..
sona
25 October 2007 13:55
Kajal said…

Your every event is rock. What is main part of this month event my dear?
12 December 2007 02:13
Raaga said…

I’ll try to resize Sunita… I’m very tech challenged :-)
03 January 2008 03:28
TBC said…

Sunita,
I just sent you an e-mail with the details you need for the event. Please check your spam folder.;-)
21 January 2008 18:33
Dee said…

Hey Sunita , Im Interested in hosting this fab event in 2009 sometime if there is any slot free. Please let me know.
14 June 2008 02:00
Erin @ The Skinny Gourmet said…

What a fun event theme. It makes perfect sense, and yet I havent seen a similar one out there. I’m excited for this month’s challenge (wasabi). I have the perfect dish, if only I still have time to make it.

By the way, I know I’m new to the circuit, but I would love a chance to host and participate more with the event. I’m pretty flexible about the scheduling. skinnygourmet AT gmail DOT com
18 June 2008 23:23
Sukanya said…

Lovely event Sunita and a very good choice of spice I must add. I have just sent in my entry. you have a wonderful blog here.
29 August 2008 09:48
Carlos said…

Good Job! :)
06 September 2008 12:31
mimi said…

hi sunita, i can’t believe october is almost here!! i better get my blog in order! :)

i have decided to choose “think spice … think paprika!”

can you add that to your list? i will make sure to get a post about the rules on my blog in the next couple of days.
29 September 2008 01:31

Reply

2 sheba September 8, 2009 at 6:04 am

Such a ‘hot’ event..would love to be a part of it..

Reply

3 Bethany November 2, 2009 at 11:22 am

Sunita what a great idea! As soon as I’ve got a moment I’m looking forward to participating. Can we includ already posted recipes?

Bx

Reply

4 Sunita November 2, 2009 at 11:33 am

You can, just make sure to repost them with a link here and to that of the event announcement at the guest host’s page. Keep an eye on the sidebar for the current theme.

Reply

5 Chantal January 18, 2010 at 4:00 am

I LOVE this idea! How fun! There are several blogs that host similarly but usually pick a recipe and while this is a nice challenge sometime and can expose you to new areas of cooking I think the spice idea is fantastic!! a. its inexpensive b. if you have food allergies, preferences or dietary needs you can adapt easily and c. i have spices in my pantry that I am scared to use or just don’t know how so this is fantastic! Do you have an official blog roll of participants? If so I’d love to be added.

Reply

6 Sunita January 18, 2010 at 10:48 am

Hi Chantal, thanks for enthusiasm regarding Think Spice. It has been going on since 2007 and after the initial few months being hosted by me, I have passed on the baton to various guest hosts. There is no blogroll; every month the particular guest host announces the name of the spice and entries are invited- anyone can participate. You can also check out these pages- http://sunitabhuyan.com/?page_id=529 and http://sunitabhuyan.com/?page_id=521

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