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Plant substances, often of exotic origin, used primarily for their flavor and pungency to enhance the taste of various recipes.
Dried bark of the cinnamon tree, sold in sticks, ground or as an essential oil; it is often associated with candy, sweet dishes and hot drinks.
A staple of Indian cooking, the pungency of this blend of spices varies, depending on how much pepper or chile is used.
The most expensive spice, actually derived from the handpicked and dried stigmata of the crocus flower; it is an essential ingredient in paella and bouillabaisse.
Extensively used in traditional Arab, Indian and Mexican dishes, it has a strong smell and a warm, slightly bitter flavor.
The pod is green, brown or white, depending on whether it was sun- or oven-dried, or bleached; its delicate peppery flavor characterizes Indian curry.
Its sharp bitter flavor enhances the flavor of stewed dishes; it is used primarily in Eastern Europe, India and Arab countries.
Its flavor complements milk products but quickly decreases once the nut is ground; its red membrane, known as mace, is also used as a spice.
Once roasted, the seeds have a bittersweet aftertaste; they are used in Indian cooking or, when sprouted, added to salads.
Similar to ginger, it is cooked and ground into powder; among other uses, it is added to Indian curries and chutneys and provides the color for American mustard.