Star anise has a strong, licorice flavor. It is often used in Chinese dishes, especially poultry, beef, and pork. Whole stars can be added to the pot while cooking. This can also be ground, but use only a tiny amount as the flavor is quite strong. View our complete list of recipes with star anise here.
Whole pink peppercorns are rose-colored berries that are pungent and slightly sweet. They are not actually peppercorns, but dried berries from a rose plant. Pink peppercorns are flavorful and colorful ingredients that can be added to an assortment of meat and fish dishes.
Cumin is the seed of a small herb in the parsley family. It has a distinctive flavor that's slightly bitter yet warm. Cumin can be added to marinades for lamb, turkey, chicken, and pork. It also renders a depth of flavor to spicy stews and sauces. Ground cumin gives a stronger flavor than whole seeds. For cumin recipes, click here.
Kasubha is the saffron-like flower that has orangey-reddish hues Filipinos put in their porridge to give it color. It is a lot like safflower, except that kasubha has brighter color and its petals are longer. This spice is very mild and hardly has any distinctive flavor. See our list of saffron recipes here.
Ginger powder is simply dried or dehydrated gingerroot that's been ground. It is used in sweets such as cookies, cakes, and muffins, as well as in savory dishes such as hot and sour soup and Chinese-style spareribs. View our complete ginger recipes here.
Chinese 5-spice or five-spice powder is generally used in Oriental dishes. This blend is usually a combination of pulverized cinnamon, star anise, pepper, fennel seed, and cloves. Wondering what you can cook with 5-spice powder? Find out here.
Moroccan curry with turmeric is a blended spice of Moroccan curry and turmeric. It is quite pungent and the flavor is a bit stronger than plain turmeric spice. This may be mixed with other spices and used as a dry rub for meats.
Four-pepper blend is a colorful combination of white, green, black, and pink peppers. While the first three are real peppers and come from the same pepper plant or vine, the pink is not really pepper but tiny round berries also referred to as "pepper rose".
Celery seed has a taste similar to celery stalks, but has a bit of a bitter taste. This can be added to soups as well as vegetable dishes, or meat recipes mixed with vegetables.
White pepper is hotter and has a stronger taste than black peppercorns. While black peppercorns are picked and dried when still unripe, whole white pepper are actually ripened berries. After the berry is picked, it is soaked to easily remove the outer hulls- thus its white color. Whole or ground, white pepper usually goes into dishes where specks of black pepper would be unappealing (think pasta dishes with cream sauce). Know where to use white pepper here.
Cloves have a strong, pungent aroma. It has a slightly spicy taste to it and is commonly used in pickling and brines. When ground, cloves can be used in gingerbread cookies and muffins. Baked sweet hams take on a spicy depth of flavor when flavored with whole cloves. See what you can do with cloves, here.
Chili powder is a common name for a powdered or ground mix composed mainly of red chili peppers or cayenne. The mix can be all powdered chilis or have other spices in it such as nutmeg and cumin. It is the addition of other spices that causes some chili powders have a milder flavor. For chili recipes, go here.
Red onion powder comes from finely ground dehydrated red onions. This variant has a stronger smell and taste compared to white onion powder, which comes from the milder white onion.
Safflower gives food a pale orange color. It doesn't do much in adding flavor as it is practically tasteless. But the oil pressed from the seeds of the safflower plant is used in cooking and is said to have health benefits.
Turmeric comes from the root of a plant belonging to the ginger family. This root is boiled or steamed, then dried and eventually ground. Turmeric is one of the main ingredients of curry powder. It is used in many Asian dishes, but is also used in making mustards, relishes, chutneys, and pickles. Click to view our full list of turmeric recipes.
Allspice is not a blend of "all spices" but its taste and aroma is reminiscent of a mix of cloves, cinnamon, and nutmeg. The warm sweet flavor of allspice lends itself to a wide variety of foods and is commonly used in both savory and sweet foods. Where to use allspice? Click this.
Garlic powder is merely dehydrated garlic cloves that have been pulverized. But unlike onion powder, pure garlic powder retains its flavor and can last a long time. Can't take the strong smell and taste of fresh garlic? Go for garlic powder. Go here to see our list of recipes.
Cardamom is quite expensive, in fact, in some countries it is used only during festivities. Cardamom is pungent and aromatic and has lemony undertones in flavor. It can be used in pickles as well as in some dishes with shellfish. It is better to buy cardamom as whole pods, because ground cardamom quickly loses its flavor. Cook with it with our cardamom recipes.