Monday, February 21, 2011

It's HERE!

It's funny how today is a government holiday and therefore no mail, but I still had the best mail day EVER!  Thanks UPS and FedEx!  Let's talk about what UPS brought me in this post, and we'll save my other delivery for a different day (gotta keep the content coming, you know?).

About a month ago I discovered a website called Penzeys Spices, that had a fantastic selection of all different kinds of spices and rave reviews from the loyal customers.  Those same customers claimed these spices were higher quality than what you would find at a supermarket and at comparable and sometimes lower prices.  I love high quality ingredients and was very intrigued, so I ordered a catalogue to get a better look at everything (since there aren't really photos on the website).  3 days later, I got impatient and had been drooling over their amazing descriptions, so I broke down and ordered.  And today it's HERE!

I busted almost all the seals to smell everything immediately, LOL.  For starters, the Vietnamese cinnamon is incredible.  It is like no other cinnamon I have ever tasted.  You know how normally it's really overspiced and if you get a little too much you start to choke on the air around you?  This stuff is NOTHING like that.  When I opened the jar to smell it I was greeted by a fragrant, aromatic spice, and I tasted a bit and was delighted at a touch of sweetness.  Not like sugar, not quite so bold.  The other flavors around it were much bolder.  But I was thrilled to try a complex, real cinnamon that will add some interest to whatever I use it in.  Must find a cinnamon bread recipe ASAP!

Alton Brown would be pleased at these; whole nutmeg!  You grind what you need as you need it, and the flavors and oils are maintained much longer than if you ground the whole thing and stuck it in a jar.  The Penzeys website recommends using it in just about everything, from grilling to baking to sausage making to mac n cheese, which I fully intend to do!  :D

I also got some big bags of caraway seeds and yellow mustard seeds as I tend to go through those quickly with my bread making.  I actually did not think that I ordered big bags, but it turns out 4 ounces each of mustard seeds and caraway seeds is quite a large amount, LOL.  I put the Girl Scout cookies in for a scale comparison, because everyone knows how big Girl Scout cookie boxes are - some of us too well. 

Finally, perhaps the thing I'm MOST excited about, is this little tiny baggy with a single gram (28 grams = 1 ounce - this is ONE GRAM) of goodness. 
I have never, in my life, had saffron in my spice cabinet.  Actually, I don't think that I've ever seen it in real life.  I always thought it was yellow for some reason.  Anyway, saffron is the most expensive of all the spices as an acre of land will only yield 7 pounds of saffron (at most!), not to mention all the labor goes in to it.  Luckily, most dishes that call for saffron only require a pinch of it (including BREAD, eeee!), so my little gram will last me a while before I have to break down and get more.  Just a whiff of this stuff, and I realize that this could end up being a very expensive habit...


  1. Hey, Spice Girl,

    Everything looks fabulous. I will have to check out that company.

    BTW, are those Girl Scout Samoa cookies I see in the background?

    Your mom, who loves Samoas...

  2. WHAT WAS THE OTHER DELIVERY?!?!??!?! Was it my package????

    Brilliant haul. I've decided I'm investing in a pestle and mortar next so I can grind things down from fresh as much as possible. I've always had my nutmeg that way so I don't know why I stopped.

  3. I will lick the screen nao, kthxbai.

    No, seriously. Stop posting things I'm jealous about!