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Once you have a solid understanding of all things spice, we challenge you to create your own spice blend. Doing this will give you the opportunity to fully discover and appreciate each individual spice that goes into a blend, smell its aroma, control the texture, and choose its particular use. Creating a spice blend isn't complicated, but there are a few important things to consider when doing so.
The key to a good blend is a good idea. Consider these four guiding principles before you begin: inspiration, flavor profile, texture, and appearance.
Before you begin blending. This will help you identify if you're going in the right direction. Limit yourself to 5 to 7 ingredients.
Always use a scale and write down the exact quantities. Keep each ingredient in a separate container and take notes on any adjustments you make along the way.
Decide which spices will need to be toasted, not all of them can be. It's trial and error, but don't forget to note the details in your recipe. You want to achieve as many layers of taste, flavor, and texture as possible, and toasting or roasting your spices will help get you there.
Decide which spices you want to grind, use a coffee grinder, and grind each spice separately.
Once all the spices are ready (roasted, toasted, ground, or whole), combine them in a bowl and stir them together. Allow the mixture to cool if necessary, and store in an airtight container out of direct sunlight.
By the end of the process you might not have the best judgment. We recommend stepping away and waiting before analyzing the blend.
Start by analyzing your blend visually, then taste it. Do you like it? Does it deliver on the initial idea or concept? Which flavors and notes does it give? Analyze the texture as well. Does it make sense for the intended use? Make small adjustments if it's just about right, or start over.
Congratulations! You've just created a blend. Name your blend after the source of inspiration or for the preparation it was made for.
This is where the real testing begins. Try it first in a simple dish and experiment using it on familiar dishes. Try adding your blend before or after you cook. Would it have been better if you roasted the chicken with the spice already on it? Ask yourself these questions when you're testing.