Middle Eastern Spice Mixes

These spice mixes will give your everyday dishes an exotic feel without extra effort.

Baharat

Baharat is usually used to flavor lamb, beef, chicken or fish but it fits equally well to vegetables. It’s also a great addition to soups. Or you can just use it as a condiment. The recipe differs from shop to shop and family to family. But a typical mix contains these ingredients – all finely ground:

6 tsp paprika
4 tsp black pepper
4 tsp cumin seeds
3 tsp nutmeg
3 tsp cinnamon
3 tsp coriander seeds
3 tsp cloves
1 tsp cardamom

Ras el hanout

Some people describe Ras el hanout as milder than Baharat, others as spicier. And that is because both recipes do vary a lot and can contain more than 30 ingredients. Here is a recipe that is similar to Baharat. It does get a warmer colour due to the ginger and turmeric. Roast the seeds for a more intense flavor as it is done in the middle east or keep them raw for raw food dishes.

6 tsp paprika
3 tsp chilli flakes
4 ½ tsp cumin seeds
7 tsp cinnamon
9 tsp coriander seeds
3 tsp cardamom
3 tsp ginger
3 tsp turmeric

Za-atar

A fantastic spice mix to add onto bread and pizza (with a coating of olive oil) as well as on plain yoghurt and other dips.

1 Tbsp thyme
1 Tbsp oregano
1 Tbsp whole sesame seeds
1 Tbsp ground sesame seeds
2 tsp ground sumac
½ tsp coarse salt

Toasting the sesame seeds will offer a more smoky, more nutty taste, but you can use them raw for a 100% raw dish.

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