Tag: ginger

Following the Spice: Cumin

In ancient times, cumin was as common a spice as black pepper is on our tables today. Used as a condiment, baked in bread, and distributed widely, cumin seed generated several fascinating myths and origin stories as a list of incredible health benefits. In the Ancient World, people believed that cumin could cure anything but death. What is Cumin?

Sa cuminThere are two kinds of seed that are called cumin.

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The Heat of Ginger


grated_gingerGinger is a root, the rhizome of Zingiber Officinale, and grows in fertile, moist soil (definitely not where I come from). Unlike most spices when ginger is used fresh, not dried, it is still called a spice. Typically the root is dried, and ground to a powder, or the oils from the ginger are extracted and used medicinally.

Ginger purportedly has many medicinal uses. Most of them are unproven by Western Medical Science, but well known in the Schools of Ayurveda, and in Traditional Chinese Medicine. I am not a trained Nutritionist, or part of the Medical Profession, yet I do believe in the power of herbs and spices to heal. And ginger is one of those spices. It is known as an anti-inflammatory, helping with Arthritis, nausea and vomiting in both pregnancy and chemo therapy patients. It is used to combat ulcerative colitis, heartburn and stomach upset. It is also used to treat Upper Respiratory infections. It may possibly help in heart-related disease, by lowering cholesterol. And there have been studies done to show its usefulness in alleviating motion-sickness. Ginger may possibly have cancer-fighting agents as well, but that remains unproven as of right now. read more

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Spicing up your Cuisine: Exploring the World of Spices


SpicesSpices make up the “palette” of a chef. They have a long and intriguing story of travel; how they spread out from a point of origin to all over the globe. Each culture treats these spices a little differently, yet there seems to be several common spices used in global cuisine.

Cumin, coriander, turmeric, and ginger make up the base of most Asian and South Asian cooking. Pick up any Indian cook book, and at least three of the four will be listed. The combination is the base of a “curry,” or gravy, that is made to compliment the food on the table. read more

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This Week’s Experiment: Pickles

pickles_01 (1003x1280)It is Springtime and that means pickling cucumbers are in abundance at the markets. Lots and lots of pickling cucumbers, on sale. Everywhere. Lately, I’ve been contemplating pickling, but I don’t own a canning system. You know, the pot, the rack, the tongs. Hopefully this is something that might be in my future, but for now, it’s about figuring out how to make pickles without all the gear.

An online search revealed a breakdown of a Kosher Dill Pickle recipe over at David Lebovitz’ blog It is his recap on Arthur Scharwtz’s Homemade Kosher Pickles. Looked easy enough, and only involves fermenting, not canning. read more

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Books by Chef Johnna

  • Delectable Vegan Soups -------------------------------------------------------
  • Things Vegans Fry: Crunchy Comfort Food for Vegans

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