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Spices & Condiments

Allspice

Allspice is a type of sweet-purposed round pepper that has a mixed flavor of cinnamon, nutmeg, and cloves (hence the name allspice). It's also known as Jamaica pepper or pimenta dulce (sweet pepper in Spanish).

Almond Extract

Almond extract is a flavoring made from almonds macerated in alcohol.

Aniseed

Aniseed is a crescent shaped seed, which is a member of the parsley family; used in both sweet and savory dishes; impart a strong licorice flavor and a lightly sweet tone to food and drinks. 

Anise Oil

Anise oil is derived from the seeds and sometimes from the leaves, it is used in drinks to mark an accentuated flavor to a spirit such as vodka. 

Ataco

Ataco, Amaranthus caudatus is a medicinal plat that grows in Ecuador. It is used as infusion to prepare cocktails.

Basil

Aromatic and culinary herb of a strong, pungent, and sweet smell.

Bay Leaf

This is an aromatic type of leaf from the Bay Laurel, used fresh or dried in cooking for its distinctive flavor and aroma. 

 

BBQ Sauce

A very popular sauce used to seasoning barbecued foods such as pork ribs, and chicken wings mainly. It comes in different styles, flavors, and types. Most of them contain tomato paste, vinegar, spices, and sweeteners, and a smoky flavor. 

Bitters

Bitters is a type of spirit made from different herbs, citrus, roots, and plants dissolved in alcohol or glicerine. Its flavor is bitter or bittersweet is used to flavor and add a dry zest to cocktails. Because of their function as a digestive aid and appetite stimulant bitters are often used in before- and after dinner cocktails (aperitifs and digestifs).

If bitters is used in cocktails, the quantity is always small to prevent ruining the cocktail. It is recommended not to use it with non alcoholic drinks due to its high alcohol content.

Common bitters include:

Angostura Bitters

Angostura bitters were developed in 1824 by Dr. J. Siegert, who intended them for use as a tonic to treat fatigue and stomach ailments. It is now the single most widely distributed bar item in the world.

Angostura Bitter is named for the port town of Angostura, Venezuela, and not for the bark of the eponymous tree. It is made from a secret blend of tropical herbs, plant extracts and spices - reportedly over forty ingredients.

Orange Bitters

Orange bitters are made from the rinds of unripe sour oranges steeped in alcohol (usually gin) without adding sugar.

This is the second most popular kind of herbal bitters at the bar, second to Angostura bitters, chances are good however, that you have never seen this available on your store shelves.

Here is a recipe to make it at home:

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 pound dried Seville Orange peel, chopped finely
  • 1 pinch Cardamom
  • 1 pinch Caraway
  • 1 pinch Coriander seeds
  • 2 cups Grain Alcohol
  • 4 tbsp burnt Sugar or Caramel coloring

Preparation:

Mix the orange peel, herb seeds, and alcohol. Let stand in a sealed jar for 15 days, agitating every day. Pour off spirits through a cloth, and seal again. Take the strained off seeds and peel, put them in a saucepan, crushing with a wooden muddler. Cover them with boiling water, simmer 5 minutes. Put in a covered jar for 2 days, then strain this off and add to the spirits. Put in burnt sugar for color. Filter again, let stand until it settles perfectly clear, then bottle for use.

Lemon Bitters

Lemon Bitters is prepared from a variety of lemon oils, augmented with lemon grass and other natural flavors. Lemon bitters add an interesting background flavor to cocktails.

Peach Bitters

Peach Bitters is a fruity mixer very rarely used at present time, however it's a big helper in improving the smooth touch of peach aroma in cocktails that require this particular ingredient. It can also be a substitute for other type of bitters.

Underberg Bitters

Underberg is a natural herb bitters taken for digestion. It is made from a selection of aromatic herbs from 43 countries plus water, alcohol, and roots of the genus Gentiana. Its origin country is Germany and since 1846 Europeans have taken it to conclude a meal. It is not a beverage so it should be sipped at once. It has a strong herbal taste, good to flavor some of after meal cocktails.

Peychaud's Bitters

It's a gentian-based bitters with floral aroma and sweet taste. It's currently produced in the USA, and it's an important ingredient for the Sazerac cocktail.

Whiskey Barrel Bitters

Obtained from the freshly emptied oak whiskey barrels from Tennessee, it has a soaked and aged whiskey-taste. Very rare to find sometimes, because it's bottled only once a year.

Rhubarb Bitters

Rhubarb and other flavors combined in this one.

Celery Bitters

Bitters made from celery and used in cocktails with unusual flavors such as the Prairie Oyster or Bloody Mary, etc.

Candied Orange Rind

Candied orange rind or zest is a part of the orange peel boiled and candied in a heavy sugar syrup, after this is drained and used as spice for pastry and mulled wine drinks.

Cannabis

Cannabis is a term that refers to marijuana and other drugs made from the same plant. This plant is believed to have originated in the mountainous regions of the Himalayas in India. It is used in infusion to create Indian cocktails.

Cardamom

Cardamom are aromatic seeds used as a spice or condiment in both food and drinks. Very typical from India's cuisine, it's found as seeds or powder.

Cayenne Pepper

Cayenne Pepper is made from the dried pods of pungent chili peppers. It has little aroma, but it is extremely hot to taste.

Celery Salt

Blend of salt and celery seeds.

Chat Masala Powder

Chat Masala Powder is a group of spices grounded together very popular in Indian cuisine and as a condiment for their cocktails. The next is a recipe to make chat masala:

Ingredients:

  • 4 tbsp Coriander Seeds
  • 2 tbsp Cumin Seeds
  • 1 tsp Carom Seeds (ajwain)
  • 1 tsp Red Chili Powder
  • 2 tbsp Black Salt Crystals (or ordinary salt)
  • 1 tbsp Mango powder (amchoor)
  • 1/2 tsp Garam Masala
  • 1 tsp Oil

Preparation:

Spray oil in a non-stick frying pan and roast coriander seeds, cumin, and carom seeds separately till they turn aromatic. Mix all the ingredients and grind into a fine powder using a grinder. Store chat masala in a air-tight bottle and use rasam spice when required.

Chili Pepper

A very hot type of spice, used commonly in many cuisines. It's actually a fruit, and can be found in different hot intensities and/or colors. Such as green, red, yellow. 

Yellow Chili Pepper Sauce

Known as Ají Amarillo in Perú is a popular condiment in the Peruvian culinary culture and can be found at ethnic food stores.

Chocolate Extract

Chocolate extract is very like vanilla extract, it is basically the essence of the cacao bean distilled in a water-alcohol solution. It is an excellent alternative to replace the lost flavor of processed chocolate in your drinks. E.g. Nielsen-Massey Pure Chocolate Extract.

 

 

Cilantro Paste

Traditional Indian food ingredient is made like it follows:

Ingredients:

400 g Cilantro (coriander), chopped leaves

5 Chilies, green and finely chopped

1 tbsp Cumin, ground seeds

3 tbsp Lemon Juice

1 Garlic clove, chopped

Salt, to taste

Instructions:

Combine all ingredients in a blender until smooth. Add a little water or oil if too dry. Keep paste in air-tight jars and store in the fridge for one or two days before using.

Cinnamon

Cinnamon is an aromatic bark used as spice of many dishes and drinks. This bark comes of the Ceylon cinnamon tree and it is used as rolled strips or ground.

Cloves

Cloves are the dried unopened flower buds of an evergreen tree. They look like small, brown, nail-shaped spices frequently used to flavour cooking liquids for simmering fish, poultry or meat.

Cocktail Sauce

Cocktail sauce is a simple form of ketchup sauce mixed with prepared horseradish. It is popular to be consumed with shrimp and sea food.

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup ketchup
  • 2 tablespoons prepared horseradish
  • 2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
  • 1 tablespoon of chopped cilantro
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper

Preparation:

In a small bowl, stir together all the ingredients, seasoning with salt and pepper to taste. Cover and chill until ready to serve.

 

Coriander

Aromatic herb leaves also known as culantro, cilantro or Chinese parsley.

Cumin

An aromatic spice, slightly bitter, and flavorsome that derives from the Cumin plant seed. It's traditionally used in Indian cuisine. 

 

Curry Powder

It's a mixture of different powdered spices that depending of the recipe may include: coriander, turmeric, cumin, fenugreek, and other additional ingredients such as ginger, nutmeg, black pepper, mustard seed, cardamom, mace, garlic, and fennel seed, etc.

 

Dill

A type of herb used fresh or dry to flavor many drinks or food.

Dried Hibiscus Flowers

Dried hibiscus are edible flowers considered a delicacy in Mexico. They are used to create teas, and to flavor other drinks.

 

Garam Masala

Garam Masala literally translates to hot blend of spices is the principal spice blend of North Indian Cooking. It is used to spice some Indian drinks as well. It is available at any Indian grocery store.

Garlic Powder

Garlic powder is dehydrated ground garlic. Available at any food store. E.g. Mc Cormick®

 

 

Ginger

Ginger is an herb indigenous to southeastern Asia, cultivated in India, China, West Indies and inclusive U.S.

Ginger root more than a spice, it is also considered as a taste maker, a drug, an appetizer and a flavoring. Available at any food store fresh, powdered, marinated or crystalized.

Guarana Powder

Guarana is the pure seed of the Paullinia Cupana vine, a climbing shrub found in isolated areas of the Amazon rainforest. The seed is about the size of a pea, looks like a brown pebble and has a slightly bitter taste. When dried and ground to a powder, guarana is mixed into energy drinks.

Guayusa

Ilex guayusa, commonly known as "guayusa" is an Amazonian tree of the holly genus, native to the Ecuadorian Amazon Rainforest. Guayusa has been used from ancient times to modern day to increase physical and mental capacity, to fight fatigue, and to restore youthful energy.


The tea is smooth and sweet tasting, traditionally, it is drank at first rise in the morning, before sunrise, giving great energy for the day, but is also drank throughout the day.  For many Ecuadorian Indigenous, the morning drinking of guayusa is a social ritual.

Hops

Hops are flower clusters used as flavoring and stability agent in the process of brewing Beer. Hops turn a beer bitter and tangy in flavor. It was used for various other purposes such as a herbal medicine, and other beverages.

Horseradish

Horseradish is a sharp, strong-flavored condiment made from the grated roots of this plant. It's found as sauce, and powder. It gives your cocktails a very hot 'wasabi' touch.

Wasabi Paste

Wasabi paste is a paste form of the Japanese horseradish root, called 'wasabi'. It usually comes in tubes or as in a powder to be mixed with water, it's applied in Japanese cuisine, e.g. sushi.

Jalapeño Pepper

It's a type of Mexican chili pepper, very common in green but also available in red color. It's prized for its warm burning sensation when eaten.

Lavender Essence

Lavender essence is a concentrated form of the scent of lavender flowers. Get the one for use in ice creams and drinks.

Lemon Balm

Lemon balm is a herb with a gentle lemon scent used as a flavouring in ice creams and herbal teas, it's also known as Melissa or Toronjil.

Lemongrass

Lemongrass is an aromatic herb with dry, bright, grassy, and medium acidity characteristics, very popular in Asian cuisine.

 

Licorice

Licorice gets its name from the Greek "glyks", meaning sweet and "rhiza" meaning root. It is the sweet tasting rhizomes and roots that are used as flavourings.

Maggi® Seasoning

Maggi® Seasoning is a versatile sauce made from the extract of pure vegetable proteins. This sauce features a distinctive flavor and aroma, which adds zest and depth to soups, salads, and vegetables with just a few dashes. It is a sauce for marinating, stir-frying, and dipping. It is also used to flavour some cocktails showed in this website.

 

Mango Powder

Mango Powder, also called Amchur in India, it is made by drying small segments of unripe mango and then grinding them into a powder. It is used to give a slightly sour and tangy taste to dishes. It is used as an acid flavoring agent.

Mint

Mint is a very scented herb used for flavoring. In cocktails it is used as part of the ingredients or for garnishing purposes: leaf or sprig.

Mint Leaf Paste

It's a sort of pesto made with mint leaves, chili, and spices from India.

Mustard

Mustard is a pungent tasting yellow or brown paste made from crushed mustard seeds, vinegar, water, and other spices. E.g. Dijon mustard, yellow mustard, etc.

 

Nutmeg

Nutmeg is the hard seed of a yellow fruit from a tree (Myristica fragrans) native to the East Indies; it has an oval shape and smooth texture with a strong, sweet aroma and flavor; used ground (grated) in sweet and savory dishes, it is also used as part of cocktails ingredients.

 

Onion Powder

Onion powder is a spice used for seasoning, it has a great onion flavor and aroma, and it's made from finely ground dehydrated onions.

 

Oyster Sauce

Oyster sauce is a brown dark sauce prepared from oysters and commonly used in Chinese, and Thai food. It is used as an ingredient in a cocktail called Wok.

Parsley

A bright green herb used as spice, it's one of the world's most popular herbs native to the Mediterranean region of Southern Europe. There are two kinds the curly and flat parsley.

Pepper

Pepper is the most popular spice in the world. It is sold in both black and white varieties and for the most part is imported from India, Indonesia, and Borneo. It is sold in whole (peppercorn) or ground varieties, and is used in almost every dish imaginable. It is popular using pepper in cocktails such as the famous Bloody Mary.

Peppercorn is the small dried fruit of Piper, the pepper plant.

Poppy Seeds

Poppy Seed is a tiny, round oliseed obtained from the opium plant, used as topping or garnish in some cocktails.

 

Rosemary

Rosemary is an evergreen aromatic shrub native to the southern Europe. It has dark green-colored narrow leaves used as a culinary herb.

 

 

Saffron

Saffron is a spice that comes from the flower of the saffron crocus. It's used as a food coloring agent due to it's bright orangish-yellow tincture. 

Sage

Also known as salvia, it's a herb with a slight peppery flavor.

Sahlep Powder

It's a flour made from grinding the dried tubers of several orchids such as: Orchis mascula, and Orchis militaris, which contain a nutritious starch called glucomanna. It is used to make a sort of beverage that historically has been considered an aphrodisiac. In countries like Turkey is available as an instant mix, and flavored form of salep powder.

 

Salt

Salt is a condiment that is very used in cocktails. Specially in those where salt is part of the garnish and taste. E.g. Margarita, Bloody Mary, among others.

Types of Salt used in Cocktails

  1. Table Salt: the most widely known type of salt. It is also called edible salt or just salt, the fine one. It is used to rim glasses in most of the tequila based drinks and to condiment other drinks.
  2. Kosher Salt: is a salt without additives, it has a much larger grain size than regular table salt.
  3. Seasoning Salt: is salt that has been seasoned with spices such as: pepper, thyme, garlic, or other herbs and spices.
  4. Kala Namak Salt: or Black Salt is a special type of Indian mineral salt. It is actually pinkish grey rather than black and has a very distinctiive sulfurous mineral taste, it is used in Indian cuisine as a condiment and is added to chaats, chutneys, raitas and many other savory Indian snacks.
  5. Sea Salt: is a salt obtained by the evaporation of seawater. It comes iodized for human consumption, it's a coarse salt.

Sambal

Sambal is a chili based sauce used as condiment, very popular in Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore, Sri Lanka, and Philippines. It is made from a variety of peppers such as chili peppers, etc. Sambal is available at ethnic food markets.

 

Sesame Oil

Edible oil derived from the sesame seeds.

Sorrel

European plant of the dock family, with arrow-shaped leaves that are used in salads and cooking for their acidic flavor.

Soy Sauce

Soy Sauce is a very popular Chinese-food liquid condiment made by brewing soybeans, along with roasted grain, water, and salt. It's very dark brown in color and comes in three types: light or fresh, dark or old, and dark thick soy sauce. E.g. Kikkoman®

Star Anise

It's a small star-shaped spice fruit with one seed in each peak. It has an aniseed flavor and it's used in the production of several liqueurs such as Galliano, Sambuca, Pastis and some types of Absinthe.

 

Sugar

Sugar is an important ingredient in cocktails making. It is used not only to sweeten drinks but also to garnish them.

There are different types of sugar used for these purposes, the most common types are:

White Sugar: or granulated sugar is made from sugar canes or sugar beets. It is highly refined and is available in cubes or tablets in many sizes and textures.

Caster Sugar: or castor sugar is a superfine sugar, more finely granulated that dissolves almost instantly.

Powdered Sugar: or confectioners' sugar is a granulated sugar that has been crushed into a fine powder with a small amount of cornstarch, which is added to prevent clumping.

Coarse Sugar: or decorating sugar has granules about four times larger than those of regular granulated sugar. It is colored by using food colorants.

Brown Sugar: is white sugar combined with molasses, which gives it a soft texture. There are two types: light and dark.

Jaggery Sugar: this traditional, dark, unrefined sugar is made from the juices of crushed sugar cane. It is used to sweeten dishes all over India and Sri Lanka, in South America is known as panela. It has a rich nutty flavor, but unlike more refined sugars, it retains more mineral salts without using chemical agents.

Muscovado Sugar: is a very dark brown, moist and coarse unrefined brown sugar, with a strong molasses flavor, made from pure sugarcane juice. 

Tabasco Sauce

Tabasco Sauce is a spicy condiment in form of a hot sauce made from Tabasco peppers, vinegar, and salt. The most popular brand known worldwide is: McIlhenny. It is used in most of the bloody cocktails.

Tarragon

A perennial plant of the daisy family, with narrow aromatic leaves thatare used as a culinary herb.

 

 

Tomato Sauce

Tomato sauce is a tomato rich flavored sauce, used to condiment some food such as pasta, meat, vegetables, etc. You can find it at any food store in a wide variety of textures, and flavors. E.g. Hunt's

Vanilla

Vanilla is a flavoring pod derived from orchids native to Mexico. It is world-wide used as flavoring agent in food, and there are 3 main preparations of natural vainilla:

Vainilla Extract.- in alcoholic or glycerol solution, dark and aromatic

Vanilla Pod.- split in two to obtain a stronger aroma, used in cocktails as garnish

Vanilla Sugar.- ground pods commonly blended with sugar

 

Vinegar

Vinegar is a sour tasting liquid that contains acetic acid, obtained by fermenting dilute alcoholic liquids, such as wine, cider, or beer. It's used as condiment, and available in many types: apple cider vinegar, white wine vinegar, balsamic vinegar (or italian vinegar), spiced vinegar, etc.

 

Worcestershire Sauce

Worcestershire Sauce is a liquid condiment used worldwide. It is made from the combination of several ingredients: vinegar, molasses, corn syrup, water, chilli peppers, soy sauce, pepper, tamarinds, anchovies, onions, shallots, cloves, asafoetida, and garlic. Uses: Bloody Mary Cocktail among others.

Wormwood

A woody shrub with bitter aromatic taste. It is used as ingredient of Vermouth, Absinthe, and some medicines.

 

Zeera Powder

Zeera Powder is made from cumin crushed seeds, it is used in India to condiment food and drinks.