Spicing Up Your Holiday Cooking

Spices are a big part of holiday cooking. We got some tips on how to enjoy them, from Love that Spice owner Marlena Jayatilake and her assistant Heather Cenek.
December 15, 2013 6:53:41 AM PST
Spices are a big part of holiday cooking. We got some tips on how to enjoy them, from Love that Spice owner Marlena Jayatilake and her assistant Heather Cenek.

474 Central Avenue Unit 4
Highland Park, IL

From Love That Spice website:
Love That Spice (LTS) is a Chicago Delivery spice merchant that brings high quality exotic spices and herbs to your doorstep. LTS is a family owned and operated international enterprise that seeks to deliver hand-selected, premium quality items from Sri Lanka as well as other countries to Chicagoland and beyond. Our retail store opened on October 14, 2013 in the beautiful and quaint town of Highland Park, IL. Aside from offering 70+ different products, LTS also serves to inform the community about the multitude of health benefits that come from supplementing one's diets with their spices. The goal of Love that Spice is to share the benefits of spices and the range of boosters it can add to traditional and non-traditional cuisine. It brings century old international health and cultural use to a local platform--filling a health and cultural gap. LTS also engages with the community by offering recipes on its website and by publishing an ongoing blog that discusses relevant food and health topics. In this day and age, time and health are of the essence. LTS is unique in that it offers up-to-date news on the relatively unknown health benefits of superfoods, spices and herbs and seeks to engage with new clients so that they walk away confident in using spices in their own cooking and aware of the benefits of such. Last but not least, LTS is seeking to bridge communities by bringing together different cultures via their common denominator, food.


Roasted Salmon with Tamarind, Ginger and Smoked Paprika

2 tablespoons of smoked paprika
2 cloves
1 tablespoon cumin seeds
1 teaspoon of crushed smoked red chili
1 teaspoon smoked organic black peppercorns
3 tablespoons vegetable oil plus more for baking dish
4 large garlic cloves minced
3 medium shallots minced
2 tablespoons minced fresh ginger
2 tablespoons jarred tamarind puree
2 tablespoons pure maple syrup
Kosher salt
2 ½ pound whole salmon fillet
Flaky sea salt for sprinkling

In a spice grinder combine cloves, cumin seeds, smoked red chili and black peppercorns and grind into a powder
In the same skillet heat 3 tablespoons of vegetable oil, add garlic, shallots and ginger cook over moderate heat stirring occasionally until softened, about 5 minutes.
Stir in the ground spices and cook until fragrant, about 3 minutes.
Add the tamarind puree and maple syrup and season with a pinch of kosher salt.
Preheat oven to 300 degrees.
Lightly season the salmon with kosher salt.
Oil a large glass baking dish.
Spread the spice paste on both sides of salmon and set the salmon skin side down in the dish.
Fold the thin tail end under to ensure even thickness.
Let the salmon stand at room temperature for 25 minutes.
Cover the baking dish with foil and bake the salmon for 40 minutes, or until barely opaque in the center.
Sprinkle with the sea salt and serve.

Orange Glazed Christmas Ham
1 spiral sliced ham
1 ten ounce bottle of Spicy Orange Finishing Sauce by Love That Spice

Preheat oven to 400 degrees
Bake ham for 40 minutes
Meanwhile warm the finishing sauce over low heat
Liberally brush or pour the finishing sauce on the ham and return it to the oven for an additional 10 minutes.
Remove from oven and serve

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