Weekend Reading: Spice Edition

We’ve been talking plenty of shop in our Spices 101 series, and a few of you might be wondering: how does this Simple Bites editor know about spices anyway?

If you’ve got a few minutes, let me share how I learned about spices and back up some of this information I’m dishing out.

We’ve also got our usual link love, as well as special ‘Spices 101′ links, so pour a coffee and join us.

Before I had children, I worked for a renown chef/caterer, world traveler, and spice enthusiast named Phillipe de Vienne. I had never met anyone so passionate and knowledgeable about spices, nor had I ever tasted such cooking. His command of the kitchen, paired with his mastery of spices, made him an ideal mentor for any young cook; I was fortunate it was me.

Working under his tutelage opened my eyes to a whole world of spices that I never knew existed and a style of cooking that was simple, yet exotic. I learned a wealth of knowledge and now enjoy ‘passing it on’, to borrow a phrase from Jamie Oliver.

I went on to start a family and Philippe opened a spice shop. He sources his own spices – traveling several months of the year to do so – and imports them for the gourmandes of Montreal–and beyond. He has published two cookbooks, expanded his business internationally and continues to ardently educate people about spices.

You can find Philippe and his wife, Ethné, featured in the May 2010 issue of Food & Wine.

As for me, well, here I am!

Spices 101 Links

More Inspiration

And last, but certainly not least:

Have YOU signed the petition?

About Aimee

Cooking has always been Aimée's preferred recreational activity, creative outlet, and source of relaxation. After nearly ten years in the professional cooking industry, she went from restaurant to RSS by trading her tongs and clogs for cookie cutters and a laptop, serving as editor here at Simple Bites.

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Comments

  1. Yes, I have signed the petition! Even browsed the cookbook – it would be an excellent book for beginner cooks.

    PS Not sure what to do with my Ethiopian Berbere that you gave me. I’ve gone through the rest.
    .-= Cheryl Arkison’s last blog: Mmm, Pizza =-.

    • OK, I’ll send you a recipe for that. Well, I can dictate here just as easily.
      Grind the Berbere all at once. Mix a few tablespoons of the spice with melted butter, chopped garlic (to taste) and salt. Rub all over a whole chicken or a couple of cornish hens.

      Roast to perfection!

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