Our ingredients – pomegranate molasses

We often get a whole host of questions about how to use the products and ingredients in our shop – from the extraordinary array of herbs, spices and chillies, through to the ever trendy black garlic…not forgetting the adventurous and curious flavours of cordials on hand.

So, we thought it was about time to start sharing some of our favourite hints, tips and recipes to get you going and maybe even debunk some myths along the way. 

Today we’re focusing on Pomegranate Molasses, why?

Well, too many times we’ve heard you cry, ‘I used it once and then it sat in my cupboard for a billion years unused’… a travesty!

There’s so much you can do with this ancient and wondrous ingredient – it’s sweet but sour, thick, sharp, rich, deep and completely versatile.

As a native fruit of Persia, the pomegranate (and pomegranate molasses) is synonymous with Middle Eastern, African and Mediterranean cooking, which is where the ingredient really does shine.

It adds a fruity almost citric taste to any dish meaning there’s no excuse as to why you can’t get creative with the ingredient.

It can work as a super substitute for balsamic vinegar, honey, or even lemon juice – anything you want to imbue with a richness, tartness, sweetness.

Think drinks, soups, stews, dressings and desserts…no longer may this ingredient sit sorrowfully in the back of your cupboard!  

Here are three recipes to get you going: – stick with it

1, 2, 3 BAKE!

Put a pin in this one

You could make your own at home, but we promise you it’s probably not worth it.

Pomegranate molasses is made from the fruits fresh juice, which is reduced to a thick, luxurious syrup to enhance and intensify the natural flavours.

Technically it’s not really a molasses, just a delicious concentrated syrup.

Now, it might sound easy to make yourself, but fresh pomegranates are really expensive and often a right faff, so why make your life difficult making it yourself?!

Oh! And looking for something a bit different? Don’t like pomegranate? Well don’t you worry – we stock Cherry Molasses too!

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Little Turban curry sauces at mmm…

Little Turban sauces at mmm

‘Little Turban’ (aka Harj) is an artisan producer of modern regional Indian cooking sauces available at mmm…

Their vision is to introduce real authentic, regional flavours and aromas from around India to your dining table.

Little Turban’s products reflect the diverse flavours, aromas, spices and tastes India has to offer.

Each of their cooking sauces is inspired by a regional classic steeped in tradition and influenced from past generations and rulers.

Little Turban at mmm…

Rich and aromatic Lababdar Curry

A meal fit for Royalty!

A rich sauce made with a cashew nut paste, cream and butter for that decadent experience.

This dish originates from the Mughal era and has stood the test of time as a truly rich royal dish from Hyderabad.

Rustic and hearty Kashmiri Rogan Josh

The famous Rogan Josh created in the way it was orginally created with freshly ground Kashmiri chillies.

These chillies give this sauce a deep red colour.

Combined with a blend of aromatic spices and tomatoes this sauce is a umami hit, which gives it an amazing meaty taste.

Creamy and aromatic Makhani Masala

Creamy, rich and well spiced is the only description for my version of the famous Butter Chicken made famous in Old Delhi

Little Turban was inspired to recreate it with his special blend of tandoori spices.

A real must for lovers of Butter Chicken and for those that enjoy a little spicy kick.

Hot and spicy Naga and Mango Curry

Little Turban’s take on the classic chicken curry but with a bit of kick.

This smooth sauce is combined with a special garam masala blend, naga chilli and mango pulp.

This combination gives the sauce a great balance of heat and sweetness.

A must for chilli lovers.

Creamy coconut Goan Fish Curry

Inspired by Harj’s (aka Little Turban) trip to Goa.

This creamy coconut based sauce brings together a blend of complex spices together which embodies the coastal flavours of Goa.

It’s great with with fish and seafood, as well as chicken, lamb, beef and pork.

Meet the producer – Little Turban’s sauces are already hugely popular with our customers at mmm… so come and try one yourself from 1pm on Saturday, 11 March with Harj himself.

Want to know more?

Kwan’s Kitchen stir fry kits at mmm…

Kwan's Kitchen at mmm...

Kwan's Kitchen family photoKwan’s Kitchen, award-winning Chinese condiments and stir fry kits at mmm… can help you create restaurant quality dishes at home in minutes.

The Kwan family knows a thing or two about the Great British taste for Chinese cuisine.

For more than three decades, they have been preparing authentic Chinese food that excites the taste buds of their restaurant clientele.

Originally from Guangdong province in South China, Kwan’s Kitchen take inspiration from the vast array of Chinese cuisine on the Chinese mainland and Hong Kong.

Kwan’s Kitchen at mmm…

Spicy Szechuan meal kit – this spicy kit uses a delicious blend of tomato and garlic combined with Kwan’s award winning Szechuan chilli oil to give you a true taste of Sichuan cuisine.

Kwans_Kitchen_spicy_SzechuanBlackbean and garlic meal kit – this stir fry meal kit uses freshly ground blackbean and garlic combined with Kwan’s award-winning salt and pepper spice blend and Szechuan chilli oil.

Aromatic curry meal kit – this kit uses a fine blend of herbs and spices combined with Kwan’s award-winning salt and pepper spice blend and Szechuan chilli oil.

Sweet chilli with sesame and coriander meal kit – this Sweet chilli stir fry kit uses a delicious blend of fresh red chillies combined with Kwan’s award-winning salt and pepper spice blend.

Unlike commercial sweet chilli sauce Kwan’s don’t dilute the chillies with water or saturate with sugar.

How to use the kits – simply choose your favourite meat and vegetables, follow the simple three step process and you have a restaurant quality Chinese meal in 10 minutes!

Salt and pepper spice/hot salt and pepper spice – Kwan’s traditional family blend of five spice, ginger and garlic has been used in Kwan’s restaurants since 1978.

Experience authentic Chinese flavours with this versatile seasoning blend.

Want to know more?

Chickpea, kidney bean and spinach Shemins Pastes curry

Chickpea, kidney bean and spinach curry
Serves 4
A quick, easy and delicious curry using Shemins Pastes and other ingredients from mmm... (as well as spinach from our favourite greengrocer in the Grainger Market)
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Prep Time
5 min
Cook Time
30 min
Total Time
35 min
Prep Time
5 min
Cook Time
30 min
Total Time
35 min
  1. 1 medium onion
  2. 1 tbsp of cooking oil
  3. 1 400g can of chopped tomatoes
  4. 100g of Shemins curry paste (we used the mild)
  5. 1 400g can of chickpeas
  6. 1 400g can of kidney beans
  7. 200g of fresh spinach
  8. Juice of half a lemon.
  1. Fry the chopped onion until golden brown then add the tomatoes and curry paste.
  2. Simmer for 7-8 minutes (adding a little water if needed) then add the chickpeas, tomatoes and spinach.
  3. Cook for a few minutes then season to taste and add the juice of half a lemon.
  4. Serve with rice, naan or whatever you fancy.
  1. We had a jar of Mr Vikkis mango chutney to hand - well, you have to have a bit of mango chutney with a curry after all!
mmm... and glug... http://mmm-glug.co.uk/

Recipe courtesy of Shemins Pastes, which are available at mmm…

More Shemins’ recipes are available here.

More recipes from mmm…

An A to Z of herbs, spices and chillies at mmm…

We have a vast array of the best quality spices, herbs and chillies at mmm… – from everyday basil and bay leaves to hard-to-find sumac, za’atar, saffron and three types of smoked ‘pimenton’ paprika.

Here is an A to Z (but by no means exhaustive) list of herbs, spices and more available at mmm…

We keep on adding to our list each week. Don’t ask if we stock it – just ask where it is!

Please note: We get weekly deliveries of our spices to ensure their freshness and are subject to stocks being available.

So please check ahead if there is a particular ‘hard to find’ herb or spice that you need and we will be happy to keep it back for you.

And even better – during the summer we get super fresh UK-grown chillies at mmm…

Keep watching this page, our website and our Tweets for more fresh chilli news.


Achiote paste – Annatto seeds, know as ‘achiote’ in México, have a mild, earthy flavour and bright red colour, making them a perfect ingredient in a marinade base.

Dissolve in a little of the paste in vinegar or a mix of fresh lime and orange juice and add salt to taste.

Use to marinate fish or meat before roasting, steaming or barbecuing or use to colour and flavour rice dishes.

Achiote seedAchiote seed (annatto seed) – this lentil shaped seed is brick-red in colour and is used to impart a yellow/orange colour to Latin American or Spanish cooking.

It can be used in place of saffron and will impart a slightly peppery, nutty taste to food.

May be used whole, ground or infused in oil.

African Grains of Paradise – 

Ajwan seedAjwain (or Ajwan) seed – a pungent, bitter fruit-pod from the Bishops Weed plant.

Although not a true seed it is known as a seed and is similar in appearance to caraway.

This spice has a strong thyme taste and should be used sparingly.

Use in speciality Asian dishes. In particular, it goes well in dahls, breads, vegetable dishes and chutneys.

Allspice berries – ground – Finely ground Allspice berries. See below.

Allspice wholeAllspice berries – whole – the dried berry of an evergreen tree indigenous to Central America and the Caribbean.

It was traditionally harvested by young men with climbing skills. Allspice was named by early European visitors because the warm flavour seemed to combine the flavours of cumin, cloves and nutmeg.

It is used in Caribbean regional cooking, as an ingredient in pickling vinegar and as an essential ingredient in the mix of spices for mulling wine and ale.

AmchoorAmchoor (Mango powder) – Amchoor, also known as mango powder, is made from dried unripe mangoes and has a sour, bitter flavour.

It is widely used in North Indian cooking to flavour chutneys, pickles and vegetable dishes.

Use sparingly!

Anardana (ground pomegranate seeds) – 

Aniseed whole - aniseAnise (or whole aniseed) – the seeds of an annual plant related to Cumin and Fennel.

Indigenous to the Eastern Mediterranean it is now widely cultivated in Europe and Central America.

Its mild, liquorice flavour is used in Middle Eastern cooking, particularly vegetable based dishes.

Anise Star (Star Anise or China Star) – the star shaped fruit of an evergreen shrub indigenous to southern China and Vietnam.

Star anise - anise starBoth the fruit case and the seeds have a strong aniseed flavour and may be used whole (remove before serving).

They can also be ground as found in traditional Five Spice Mix.

Use sparingly wherever an aniseed flavour is required.

Aniseed – whole – see Anise.

Annatto seed (achiote seed) – this lentil shaped seed is brick-red in colour and is used to impart a yellow/orange colour to Latin American or Spanish cooking.

Achiote seedIt can be used in place of saffron and will impart a slightly peppery, nutty taste to food.

May be used whole, ground or infused in oil.

Use to marinate fish or meat before roasting, steaming or barbecuing or use to colour and flavour rice dishes.

Advieh rice seasoning – 

Arrowroot – the starch extracted from the tuberous roots of a perennial plant indigenous to Central America.

ArrowrootArrowroot is now also cultivated in Africa and South East Asia.

Widely used as a thickening agent as it produces a thick gel when mixed with hot water.

In the past this was considered a useful source of nutrition for those with weak stomachs.

Asafoetida – a highly pungent gum extracted from the flower stalks of a herbaceous perennial native to Afghanistan.

AsafoetidaAsafoetida is widely used throughout Southern Asia to flavour rice, vegetable dishes and chutneys.

It typically works as a flavour enhancer and, used along with turmeric, is a standard component of Indian cuisine.

Asafoetida is used particularly in lentil curries, such as dal, as well as in numerous vegetable dishes.

An acquired taste!


Baharat – 

Balti stir fry mixBalti Masala (Balti stir fry mix) – see below.

Balti stir fry mix (Balti Masala) – A blend of curry spices well suited to the ‘Balti’ style of cooking.

This style of cooking, ‘legend’ has it, was developed in Birmingham using the traditional Indian Balti frying pan for British style Indian curries.

Barberry – whole

BasilBasil (sweet basil) – this leafy annual is native to the Middle East and South Asia but is now cultivated widely throughout the sub-tropical zones.

Egypt and Turkey are the main commercial producers.

The leaves have a strong, pungent taste that compliments fish and meat dishes, particularly those containing tomatoes.

Basil is one of the most widely used herbs and is essential to Mediterranean and Arabic Cuisine.

Basil – Thai holy basil

Bay leavesBay leaves (or sweet laurel) – a large tree native to the Eastern Mediterranean but now grown throughout the sub-tropical zones.

The dried leaves of Bay have been used since ancient times as a food flavouring.

They are an essential ingredient in Mediterranean, Middle Eastern and Asian cooking.

One or two leaves will add a piquant lemon flavour to fish, meat or vegetable dishes. Remove before serving.

BBQ seasoning – a blend of spices used as a marinade for meat or fish to be cooked on the barbeque.

Beetroot powder – 

Berbere – 

Biryani spice mix – 

Bouquet GarniBouquet Garni – together with Fines Herbes and Herbes de Provence, Bouquet Garni is one of the classic herb mixtures of French cuisine.

It contains Marjoram, Thyme, Rosemary, Parsley and Bay Leaves.

Traditionally the herbs would be added to a dish tied up in a muslin pouchette which would be removed before serving.

The flavour compliments meat or tomato based dishes.


Cajun seasoningCajun seasoning – a spice mixture typical of the Cajun region of the southern United States.

Add to boiled, braised or fried dishes.

Works particularly well with fish and chicken dishes.

Cajun blackening spice – 

Caraway seed – the seeds of a slender biennial plant native to a wide region covering Central Europe, the Middle East and Asia.

Caraway seedCaraway seeds are similar in flavour to aniseed and can be used whole or ground.

Caraway seeds are frequently used in baking. The seeds found in most types of rye bread are caraway seeds.

Caraway seed is also used in flavouring curries, sausages and are sometimes used in pickling and brining as well.

It pairs rather well with garlic, and also with pork and cabbage.

Cardamom – ground

Cardamom wholeCardamom whole (green pods) – cardamom is indigenous to South India, but is now cultivated extensively in Central America.

The green or straw coloured seed pods contain small black seeds that have a strong lemon flavour.

It is an indispensable ingredient in Indian cooking.

Crack the seed pods by crushing before use and remove before serving.

An interesting addition to cooked fruit!

Cardamom – pods (green) – see above.

Cardamon – pods (black)

Caribbean jerk spice rub

Cassia - cassia barkCassia (cassia bark) – the bark of a tree closely related to cinnamon.

It is indigenous to China and now cultivated throughout South Asia and Indonesia.

A five-inch piece added to rice or fish dishes will empart a cinnamon flavour.

Remove before serving.

Cayenne pepperCayenne pepper – traditionally, the ground, dried, fruit of a variety of capsicum indigenous to the Cayenne area of northern South America.

In reality, it is an alternative name for Chilli Powder.

Beware, Cayenne Pepper is very hot and should be used sparingly.

Celery leaf

Celery salt – A popular way of using ground celery seed. Use instead of salt in fish or chicken dishes or as a sprinkle on salads or vegetables.

It is particularly favoured with quail eggs.

Celery seedCelery seed – the seeds of the fleshy plant widely grown as a vegetable and indigenous to Southern Europe and North America.

The strong celery flavour that the seeds impart is much favoured by cooks in Central Europe.

Celery seed has a very strong flavour, especially when ground, so use sparingly.

It goes well with vegetables and eggs.

Chai spices

Chat masala



Chicken seasoning – a blend of herbs and spices that enhance the flavour of all poultry dishes.

Use as a rub before roasting or cooking chicken in a casserole dish.

Crushed chilliesChilli – crushed – whole chillies chopped into 3-4mm pieces for ease of use.

The chilli gets distributed more evenly throughout the dish.

Beware, Crushed chillies are very hot and should be used with caution.

Lovely sprinkled on pizza or added to pulped tomatoes to make a simple pasta sauce.

Ground chilliChilli  – ground – produced in most tropical countries but supplies available in the UK usually come from southern India, Pakistan or China.

Depending on the t of chilli pepper used powders range from the mildly hot to the downright dangerous and vary in colour from pale yellow/pink to deep red.

We try to always stock a medium hot chilli powder with a strong orange red colour.

See also Cayenne pepper

Chilli  – pepper

Chilean Alino

Chillies wholeChillies – whole – the dried seed pods of a variety of capsicum widely cultivated in the tropics.

Chillies, particularly the seeds, are very hot and should be handled with caution.

They are used in Indian cooking, both in the whole state as well as crushed or ground.

See also Chilli – ground above.

If used whole, the Chilli is usually removed before eating.

Chillies – dried ancho (poblano)

Chillies – dried bird’s eye

Chillies – dried chipotle meco

Chillies – dried chipotle morita

Chillies – dried d’arbol

Chillies – dried guajillo

Chillies – dried New Mexico red

Chillies – dried habaneros

Chillies – dried piquin

Chillies – dried naga

Chillies – dried bhut jolokia

Chillies – dried ‘ghost’

Chillies – Kashmiri – powder

Chili en polvo

Chinese 5 spiceChinese 5 Spice – also known as ‘five spice mix’.

The classic spice mixture of Chinese cooking.

The mix is made by grinding Star Anise, Fennel Seed, Cinnamon and Black Pepper.

A teaspoon full added to a chicken or beef stir-fry dish will give it the rich aniseed flavour associated with Chinese cuisine.

Chives – the fleshy leaves of a plant indigenous to Europe and North America, which is closely related to onion and garlic.

ChivesChives are one of the “fines herbes” of French cuisine, which also include tarragon, chervil and/or parsley.

It is widely used as a garnish with a mild onion flavour.

Chives enhances salads and vegetable dishes, particularly potatoes.

It goes well with cheese or mayonnaise dips.

Cinnamon  – bark (cinnamon sticks) – the bark of an evergreen tree indigenous to Sri Lanka but cultivated throughout the tropics.

Cinnamon sticksThe bark curls into sticks when being cut.

Cinnamon is one of the most widely used spices.

Its warm sweet aromatic flavour is an essential part of South Asian and Indonesian cooking.

Use a five-inch piece in meat, vegetable, fish or rice dishes.

It can also be used to flavour rice pudding or other milk based dishes.

Cinnamon – ground (cinnamon powder) – the finely ground bark of the cinnamon tree.

Cinnamon ground - powderSee also cinnamon bark/sticks above.

This popular spice is one of the essential ingredients of Indian and Indonesian cooking.

Its warm sweet aromatic flavour is also widely used in baking.

Cinnamon – sticks (Sri Lankan)

Cinnamon – sticks (Mexican)

Cloves – ground – finely ground whole cloves (see below).

Use sparingly instead of whole cloves when the clove bodies would detract from the dish.

Use with stewed or baked fruit, fruit puddings, Christmas pudding and sweet sauces.

Cloves wholeCloves – whole – cloves are the dried, unopened flower buds of an evergreen tree indigenous to the Moluccas Islands (“The Spice Islands”).

They are now cultivated throughout the tropics particularly East africa and Indonesia.

Cloves was one of the earliest spices to reach Europe and is prized for its strong, sweet, aromatic flavour.

It is particularly well suited to flavour pork or ham dishes and is also used with stewed or baked fruit. Remove before serving.

Coriander - groundCoriander – ground – finely ground coriander seed plays a part in almost every regional cooking style.

In particular Indian, Malay, Mexican and Middle Eastern.

Its warm, aromatic flavour is fully developed after frying in oil at a high temperature for a minute or so.

It is an indispensible ingredient in most curry powder/masala mixes.

Coriander leafCoriander – leaf – the dried leaves of the coriander plant have a strong aromatic flavour similar to that of ground coriander.

It is used as a garnish in North African, Middle Eastern and Indian cooking.

It can be used with vegetables, fish and in cream dips.

Coriander leaf also provides an interesting alternative to parsley.

Coriander – seed – the seed of a hardy annual indigenous to the Eastern Mediterranean area.

Coriander seedIt is now cultivated throughout the temperate zones.

After pepper, coriander is probably the most widely used spice.

The seeds have a warm, aromatic flavour, but because of the indigestible husk they are usually used in the ground form.

The seeds may be ground using a mortar and pestle or coffee grinder.

The best way to get the maximum flavour out of coriander seeds is to dry-fry them.

Seeds are ready when the warm aroma is released. Remove from pan and cool.

Seeds can then be used whole or crushed. See also – Coriander – ground above.

Creole seasoning

Cumin groundCumin – ground – finely ground Cumin Seed. See below.

Widely used in South Asian cooking.

To obtain the best flavour, fry first in oil at a high temperature for a minute or so.

Cumin gives a warm aromatic lemon flavour to meat, fish or egg dishes.

Cumin – seed – the seeds of a plant related to parsley and indigenous to the Eastern Mediterranean.

Cumin seedIt is now widely cultivated throughout the sub-tropical zones.

Cumin seeds have a full aromatic lemon flavour and are often used ground. See Cumin -ground above.

To prepare the seed yourself, first roast in a hot, dry, frying pan for a few minutes and then grind using a mortar and pestle or a coffee grinder.

Cumin is an important ingredient in Indian and Middle Eastern cooking and is also used as a topping for bread.

Cumin seed blackCumin – seed (black) – also known as Royal Cumin Seed, these are a species of Cumin cultivated in Central India.

Reputed to have a superior flavour to Cumin Seed they are particularly suited to vegetarian dishes.

Dry roast in a pan and grind finely before use.

Use as Cumin – seed (see above).

Curry leaves – the leaves of a bush indigenous to South India.

Curry leavesThese leaves smell like curry powder, hence the name.

They have a sharp, bitter, aromatic flavour.

They are widely used in Sri Lankan and South Indian cuisines to add flavour to meat, fish, vegetable or lentil dishes.

Remove the leaves before serving.

Curry powder – Biryani spices

Curry powder – Madras

Curry powder – Medium

Curry powder  – Mild

Curry powder  – Thai Green

Curry powder – Thai Red


Dhansak spice mix

Dill herb leafDill  – herb (Dill – leaf) – the leaves of an annual plant originating from the Mediterranean but now widely cultivated.

Dill Leaf has been used as a food flavouring since ancient times.

It has a particular aromatic piquante flavour and is typically used to garnish soups, salads, vegetable and fish dishes.

It is widely used in Arabic, Central European and Scandinavian cooking. See also Dill – seed below.

Dill seedDill – seed – the dried seeds of the Dill plant.

It is used to flavour the vinegar in pickles, particularly pickled gherkins.

Finely ground it may be added sparingly to soups and sauces.

It is widely used in Arabic, Central European and Scandinavian cooking.

See Dill Leaf above.

Dukka (Dukkah)




Fajita seasoningFajita seasoning – A spicy mix of chilli, onion, garlic salt, paprika, mustard, pepper, oregano, lemon, nutmeg and cinnamon.

Use as a rub or in a marinade to produce the Mexican dish of grilled meat or fish ‘fajitas’.

Perfect with our Mexican Masa Harina (corn) tortillas we have delivered each week at mmm…

Fennel seedFennel seed – the seeds of a plant related to Dill and native to the Mediterranean area. It is now widely cultivated in all temperate zones.

Its mild, aromatic, liquorice flavour enhances meat and fish dishes.

You’ll get more flavour out of fennel seeds by grinding or dry frying them.

To grind, either pound in a pestle and mortar, put them in a sealed bag and bash with a rolling pin or whizz up in a small, clean coffee grinder.

To dry fry, heat up a pan, tip in the seeds and, over a medium heat, brown for a couple of minutes, tossing them around the pan frequently.

Fenugreek (methi) – ground – finely ground Fenugreek seeds. See below. Use sparingly.

Fenugreek leafFenugreek (methi) leaf – the dried leaves of the Fenugreek plant. See Fenugreek – seed below.

Used as an alternative to ground Fenugreek when a less sharp flavour is required.

The dark green leaves add interest to many vegetarian dishes.

Widely used in Indian and Middle Eastern cooking.

Fenugreek seed - methiFenugreek (methi) – seed – fenugreek is a small annual plant which is widely distributed throughout Asia and the Mediterranean.

It has been used as a culinary spice since the earliest times.

It is mainly grown commercially in India and North Africa.

You’ll get more flavour out of fenugreek seeds by grinding or dry frying them.

To dry fry, heat up a pan, tip in the seeds and, over a medium heat, brown for a couple of minutes, tossing them around the pan frequently.

Fish seasoningFile (Sassafras) powder

Fish seasoning – a herbal mix of orange peel, fennel seed, parsley, chives, tarragon and chervil.

The mix perfectly compliments fish dishes.

Add half a teaspoon per person during the cooking process.

Chinese 5 spiceFive spice mix – also known as Chinese 5 Spice.

he classic spice mixture of Chinese cooking.

The mix is made by grinding Star Anise, Fennel Seed, Cinnamon and Black Pepper.

A teaspoon full added to a chicken or beef stir-fry dish will give it the rich aniseed flavour associated with Chinese cuisine.

Fleur de Sel

French lavender – the flowers of a perennial shrub native to the Mediterranean region.Lavender

Now more widely cultivated for its popular aromatic properties.

It can be used in southern European and Middle Eastern cooking as an interesting alternative or addition to traditional herbs.

It can also be used with Herbes de provence.


Galagal groundGalangal – ground – the finely ground dried root of a plant closely related to ginger.

It is native to South and East Asia and is widely used as an aromatic spice with a warm ginger-like flavour.

It is an essential ingredient in many Thai and Indonesian dishes.

See Galangal – root below.

Galangal – root

Garam MasalaGaram Masala – a generic name given to a mixture (masala) of ‘good’ spices kept in the kitchen of any Indian home.

The ingredients will vary depending on availability.

Our everyday, always stocked Garam Masala is a mixture of coriander, cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg.

Use as a ‘curry powder’ or sprinkle on savoury dishes, particularly vegetarian dishes, before serving.

Garlic bulbs – unsmoked

Garlic bulbs – smoked

Garlic chips granulesGarlic – granules (Garlic – chips) – related to the onion, garlic is a native of Asia but is cultivated throughout the warmer zones.

Together with black pepper, it is probably the most widely used food flavouring in the world.

Garlic chips are made by cutting up dried cloves of fresh garlic.

Half a teaspoon is equivalent to a medium sized clove of fresh garlic.

Garlic powderGarlic powder – finely ground dried garlic cloves.

It is much stronger than garlic chips so use sparingly.

Garlic powder will easily absorb water vapour and ‘cake’ so always store in an airtight container in a dry environment.

See Garlic – granules/chips above.

Garlic saltGarlic salt – garlic Salt is a mixture of salt and ground garlic, plus an anti-caking agent.

It provides a convenient way of using garlic.

It should always be stored in an airtight container in a dry environment.

See Garlic – granules/chips for general information on garlic.

Goan Xacuti curry powder

Ginger rootGinger root – the dried fleshy, tuberous rhizomes of a perennial plant indigenous to South East Asia, but now cultivated throughout the tropics.

Culinary use of ginger usually calls for the finely ground root (see Ginger – ground below).

But whole root ginger is widely used in the preparation of pickling vinegar.

Ginger ground – the finely ground, dried root of the Ginger plant (see Ginger root above).

Ginger groundGinger has been used since ancient times and is widely used in Asian and Caribbean cooking.

It is also a popular flavouring in many bakery products.

The dried root is difficult to grind in the domestic environment, so is usually purchased ready ground.

It gives a strong, warm, hot, aromatic flavour and should be used sparingly.

Goma Shio

Grains of Paradise

Cardamom wholeGreen cardamom  (Cardamom whole/green pods) – cardamom is indigenous to South India, but is now cultivated extensively in Central America.

The green or straw coloured seed pods contain small black seeds that have a strong lemon flavour.

It is an indispensable ingredient in Indian cooking.

Crack the seed pods by crushing before use and remove before serving.

An interesting addition to cooked fruit!


Harrisa paste

Harrisa paste (fresh – in our fridge)

Harissa spice mix (just blend with olive oil and garlic)

Herbes de ProvenceHerbes de Provence – Herbes de Provence is one of the classic herb mixtures used in French cuisine alongside Bouquet Garni and Fines Herbes.

Exact recipes vary, but our everyday, always stocked blend contains marjoram, thyme, rosemary, parsley.

This fragrant mixture of dried herbs typical of southern French cooking has a more robust flavour than Fines Herbes.

It is well suited for use in flavouring soups and casseroles.

Hibiscus flowers – 

Himalayan pink salt – 


Indian five spice – panch phoran – 

Iranian Advieh rice seasoning – 

Iranian sabzi ghormeh – 


Jalfrezi Curry Powder

Jalfrezi Mix

Jerk seasoningJerk seasoning – a Caribbean seasoning comprising pepper, salt, coriander, paprika, sugar, chilli, allspice, cumin, nutmeg, and bay leaves.

Jerk is a style of cooking native to Jamaica in which meat is dry-rubbed or wet marinated with a very hot spice mixture called Jamaican jerk spice.

Jerk seasoning is traditionally applied to pork and chicken.

But it can be used as a rub or a marinade for most meat and fish.

Juniper berriesJuniper berries – the dried berries of a large evergreen shrub native to the northern areas of Europe and Asia.

Juniper has a strong, aromatic flavour that has been widely used in cooking since the earliest times.

It is the essential flavouring in gin and also complements game, rabbit and hare dishes.

Use sparingly and remove the berries before serving.


Lime leavesKaffir lime leaves (lime leaves) – the dried leaves of the Kaffir tree, indigenous to South East Asia.

It should not be confused with leaves from the European Lime (Linden) tree.

Much used in Thai and Indonesian cuisine, lime leaves impart a strong, aromatic lime flavour to stir fry and water based dishes.

Use whole and remove before serving or use ground.

Kashmiri chillies – powder

Korma curry powder


Lamb seasoningLamb seasoning – a herb and spice mixture perfect for lamb.

Sprinkle on a roast or barbeque lamb before cooking.

One tablespoon will season a medium sized (2kg) joint.

Our always stocked mix ingredients include rosemary, thyme, mint, pepper, bay leaves and garlic.

Lavender (French lavender) – the flowers of a perennial shrub native to the Mediterranean region.


Now more widely cultivated for its popular aromatic properties.

It can be used in southern European and Middle Eastern cooking as an interesting alternative or addition to traditional herbs.

It can also be used with Herbes de provence (see above).

Lemon grassLemon grass – the dried stems of a fleshy grass-like plant that is indigenous to South East Asia.

Lemon grass has a delicate lemony flavour and is much used in Thai and Indonesian cooking.

Dried lemon grass can be used to flavour to a variety of south east Asian dishes.

Added to Thai and Malay-style dishes it gives a distinctive flavour which makes them quite different from Indian curries.

Use sparingly (1tsp per four persons) in vegetable and chicken dishes.

It can be ground in a coffee grinder for a stronger flavour.

Lemon myrtle – 

Lemon pepper – 

Lime (Kaffir) leaves – see Kaffir lime leaves above.

Loomi – shade dried limes

Long pepper


Mace – ground – the coarsely ground oily powder produced from Whole Mace (see below).

It has a rich aromatic flavour similar to but not as robust as nutmeg. It is ideally suited to milk and cheese based dishes.

Mace wholeMace – whole – mace is the dried outer covering of the seeds of the nutmeg tree.

It is indigenous to the Molucca Islands, but is now cultivated widely in the tropical zone.

The ‘blades’ of mace have a flavour which is similar to that of nutmeg but which is not as strong.

They can be used whole in pickling spice or milk puddings (remove before eating).

There is a wider culinary application for ground mace – see above.

AmchoorMango powder – also known as amateur.

It is made from dried unripe mangoes and has a sour, bitter flavour.

It is widely used in North Indian cooking.

This includes flavouring chutneys, pickles and vegetable dishes.

Use sparingly!


Methi (fenugreek)

Methi (fenugreek) leaves

Mexican oregano

Mexican salsa mix


Mixed herbs

Mixed spice

Mulled cider spices

Mulled wine spices

Mustard powder

Mustard seeds – black

Mustard seeds – brown

Mustard seeds – yellow


Nigella seed (onion seeds/Kalongi)

Nutmeg – ground

Nutmeg – whole


Onion Seed (Nigella seeds/Kalongi)


Oregano – Mexican


Paella seasoning

Panch phoran (Indian five spice)

Paprika/pimenton – Spanish – sun-dried mild

Paprika/pimenton – Spanish – smoked (hot)

Paprika/pimenton – Spanish – smoked (sweet)

Paprika/pimenton – Spanish – smoked (semi-sweet)

Paprika – Hungarian (sweet for goulash)


Pepper – black coarse

Pepper – black ground

Pepper – white ground

Peppercorns  – black

Peppercorns  – cracked black

Peppercorns – cubeb

Peppercorns  – green

Peppercorns – long pepper

Peppercorns  – mixed

Peppercorns  – pink

Peppercorns  – Szechwan

Peppercorns – Tellicherry

Peppercorns – White

Peppercorns – Vietnamese

Peppercorns – Wynad

Pickling spice

Pilau rice spices

Piri Piri seasoning

Pizza topping mix

Poppy seed

Poppy seed – white

Poudre de Colombo



Rogan Josh curry powder

Rogan Josh mix


Rose petals


Sabzi ghormeh

Saffron – Do La Mancha

Saffron – Spanish Grade A


Sage – wild

Salt – Himalayan pink

Sambar powder

Savory – wild

Sea salt – coarse

Sea salt – fine

Sea salt – Maldon (Welsh)

Sea salt – Maldon (Welsh) – smoked

Sel Gris

Sesame seed

Shade dried limes (aka Loomi)

Shichimi Togarishi

Shrimp paste


Star Anise

Steak seasoning

Sumac – ground

Sumac – berries

Sweet Thai basil


Tagine seasoning

Tamarind – paste

Tamarind – root

Tandoori Masala

Tandoori mix


Tellicherry black peppercorns

Thai Creen curry mix

Thai holy basil

Thai Red curry mix


Thyme – wild

Tikka masala

Tikka masala curry powder

Tsire powder


Turmeric – root


Vanilla bean

Vanilla paste

Vanilla pods

Vietnamese black peppercorns


Wasabi powder

West Indian curry powder

Wild sage

Wild savory

Wild thyme

Wynad black peppercorns


Yellow mustard seeds


Za’atar – Palestinian blend (we also sell Zaytoun Palestinian olive oil)

Za”atar – Lebanese blend

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Thanks to Green Cuisine and Seasoned Pioneers for the herb and spices information for this page.

Newcastle deli goes mmm…exican with Thomasina Miers

Thomasina Miers at mmm...

A top UK chef and restaurateur met a horde of her Mexican food disciples at a Newcastle deli today (Thursday, 12 July) after striking up a twitter debate about finding good food.

Grainger market-based ‘mmm…’ played host to Thomasina ‘Tommi’ Miers after being named as one of the top suppliers of Mexican produce in the UK.

Thomasina Miers signed copies of her new book ‘ Wahaca – Mexican Food at Home’ at the deli, which has a growing reputation for sourcing unusual spices, herbs, chillies and other Mexican staples.

The four-year old deli has been listed in the new book, which the former Masterchef winner is hoping will convert even more fans to the world of Mexican cooking.

Thomasina Miers at mmm 2 webOwner of mmm…, Simone Clarkin, 49, was delighted to hear that her deli had been listed in the book and even more excited to hear from Thomasina herself.

She said: “Thomasina Miers is the most mentioned chef we have in our deli and her first book, ‘Mexican food made easy’ is the cooking bible for many of our customers.

“Our conversations started last year via twitter when Thomasina bemoaned the lack of Mexican food in the UK.

“Many of our customers told her about our efforts to supply Mexican and South American food lovers in the region with those hard to get ingredients.

“We are delighted that the north east food scene will feature in the book and the news that Tommi was coming to mmm… saw several of our customers taking a day’s holiday especially to meet her.”

In her book, Thomasina Miers says: “When we first started Wahaca it was extremely difficult to find the necessary ingredients. Chipotles, tomatillos, Mexican oregano, even corn tortillas were unheard of.

“These days the Mexican food bug has spread and people are really up on Mexican ingredients.

“I have come across many of the suppliers, including mmm…, only recently – but they are doing a great job.”

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