Newsletter Summer 2017 – 2018

November 15, 2017 posted in Food

It’s hard to believe that it’s almost two years since we closed the door of our dear little store in Rozelle.  In the 19 years that we were there, in addition to our range of herbs, spices and books, we offered packs of empty jars, with blank Herbie’s Spices labels, for people to fill with their favourites.  We believe that our high-barrier, zip-lock plastic laminate pouches are the best way to store spices, however we know that jars are very handy for those frequently-used spices.

And let’s face it, some people love to have their herbs and spices in glass jars!

Now, to make your hearts glad again, we have packed twelve empty, lidded jars in a box that will be easy to pop in the mail for you (with labels, of course), so you can name what you put in them.  The pack is $25.80, plus postage, and you can see an image and ordering details on our website.

What’s New at Herbie’s?

Turmeric Seafood Rub

We can’t help noticing that turmeric is the buzz-word all over the place.  Now we know that it has benefits, but really, some of the claims are a bit over the top.  “Take turmeric and you’ll never die” is almost the message.  Here at Herbie’s, we have always been about making your food delicious, and we think it’s time to get back to why turmeric is such an important culinary spice.  It makes your food taste and look good!!!!  To illustrate our point, Herbie has created a new blend, Turmeric Seafood Rub, in a 35g pack for $5.30.  It’s a blend of turmeric, ginger, curry leaf, chilli, kaffir lime leaf, pepper, amchur and cardamom … just delicious, and so easy. Turmeric is very popular in southern India, where seafood is a staple, as it is particularly good at taking away the slightly pungent “fishiness” that some fish has. Just pat it on to your fish fillet before roasting or pan frying.  You’ll see there is no salt in the blend, so you are in charge of salting it to your own taste.

Box of Ideas for Summer

Our Box of Ideas for Summer is a winner, with four packs of spices (Bay Leaves ground, Bush Tucker Rub, Star Anise ground, and Shish Kebab Spice).  Ground herbs and spices are so very easy to use, and have the benefit of not needing a long cooking time. There are some super ideas for your Christmas catering, as well as simple family meals, in the recipes.  In our sunny-blue-sky summer box, it’s $25.00 plus postage.

If you’re looking for Christmas ideas ….. The third edition of Herbie’s The Spice and Herb Bible continues to be a best-seller, here and overseas. It’s just the thing for your foodie loved-one, and if you order online, Herbie can sign it especially for you.  Just put a note on your order and he’ll be happy to oblige.

Speaking of The Spice and Herb Bible, it is so full of information that Herbie has even given away the recipes for many of our top-selling spice blends. Now what you need to remember is that the finished blend is only good as its components … if you think you’re economizing by using inferior spices, your blend will be compromised.  (Forgive us if we’re preaching to the converted!)

If you have only recently entered the world of Herbie’s Spices, you may sometimes wonder, who is this character who seems to be regarded as an expert? Where did he come from and what qualifies him as such?  There’s a blog on our website about the Hemphill family history and the three generations that have built and progressed their standing in the international spice scene.  Interesting for those who didn’t know, and a walk down memory lane for those who have known us for many years!

Spice Kits

We were looking at our wide range of spice kits recently, and pondering that those of you who have given them as gifts in previous years might need a new angle this year. Of course, there’s our popular recent slow-cooking kit, Cook it Slow, as well as a brand new Stars and Stripes Spice Kit, to celebrate all the iconic Stateside foods.  It’s certainly more than burgers, pizza and fries!  Dare we say, it will trump all your other options this Christmas!  With seven truly American flavours – Gumbo File, Rib Spice, Bay Seasoning, Cayenne Pepper, Creole Seasoning, Cajun Spice Mix and Pumpkin Pie Spice – it’s in our $35.00 range of spice kits.  By the way, the red box does not signify any political preference!

Ginspiration Kit

Thanks to so many of you for the feedback on our Ginspiration Kit.  You have concurred with our thoughts that it’s the perfect gift for “the friend who has everything”. In our house, we now prefer to make our gin from the combination of spices in the kit, (having found that starting with a better vodka makes a better gin) rather than buying a branded gin.  We enjoy having control over our end product … a little more fennel seed this time, or perhaps a slightly more floral note with rose petals?

This Christmas Day, it will be all about relaxing.  Pre-prepared skewers are the plan … fish skewers with our new Turmeric Seafood Rub, lamb skewers with Shish Kebab Spice, chicken skewers with Sydney Spiceand haloumi, mushroom and tomato for the vegetarian, with Greek Seasoning – together with lovely pilafs with barberries, pine nuts and fresh mint, and plenty of salads. See Festive Recipes for more great ideas.

We wish you all a happy and flavor-filled festive season and a new year filled with promise.

Herbie and Liz

Explore All

Meal Ideas for Isolation

We thought that in these unprecedented times, it would be appropriate to share some handy meal ideas to ease the stress of isolation and potentially limited food sources. Having to self-isolate creates an opportunity to brush up your cooking skills and have some fun experimenting with some flavours you may not have tried before. Let’s face it, everyone can cook. Have you ever grilled

Spices and Spice Blends for Vegetarian and Vegan Cooking

In this short video, Ian "Herbie" Hemphill talks about how Herbie's Spices, herbs and spice blends are all suitable for vegetarian and vegan cooking. A great spice blend for vegan meals is Aloo Gobi Masala. All ingredients are listed on the labels, so you know exactly what you are getting. For a wealth of information on spices, herbs and making your own spice blends,

Herbie’s Newsletter Summer 2019 – 2020

We’re all in accord about single-use plastics. Having seen huge drifts of plastic in the pristine seas off the Indonesian islands, we know just how important it is to get rid of those shopping bags, plastic wraps and sandwich bags. When one gets emotional about bad plastics, it’s easy to begin to demonize all plastics, and perhaps it’s timely to repeat this message from our Newsletter of some years ago.


Spices & More in South India Jan-Feb 2020

We invite you to join us, Herbie and Liz, as we return to our beloved India to take you to some places where many tourists don’t go! And some amazing places that you just can’t miss. This is designed as a holiday, not an endurance test, and we have made the itinerary a little more leisurely than some earlier tours, so that you arrive home refreshed and well. Be a part of our small group and join the fun!


Herbie’s Newsletter Spring 2019

What kind of meal do you think of when you hear the word “curry”?  The origin of our English word is Kari, meaning a spiced sauce.  The English took the idea back home from the colonies, and the classic Madras curry – well-balanced and flavoursome - became a staple in the English household.  The French, meanwhile, had colonized the Pondicherry area on the south-eastern

Newsletter Winter 2019

What is Single Origin? We see it emblazoned on tea, coffee, spices and other foodstuffs.  It’s pretty simple really.  If all your potatoes have been grown in the Hunter Valley, they are single origin from that region – they don’t all have to come from the same farm. If, say, a coffee blender buys beans from Africa and South America, and mixes them all

Easter Spice Essentials

With Easter just around the corner, it’s time to think about the spices you’ll need for your Easter recipes. For all those sweet recipes such as cakes, biscuits and hot cross buns, cinnamon, allspice, cloves and cardamom are traditional, along with Mixed Spice. For extra fragrance and flavour, try using our Fragrant Sweet Spice Blend as an aromatic substitute. Easter is a great time

Herbie’s Newsletter – Spring 2021

Home Made Pizza Like so many Australians, we have had plenty of lock-down time during winter.  Our fabulous local pizzeria closed for a time, and we had to make our own pizza – not so difficult, really.  Here’s a simple dough recipe: mix 400g white bread flour with 1½ teaspoons of dry yeast and 1 teaspoon Italian Herbs.  Dissolve ½ teaspoon of salt in

Welcome to our New Website

The first thing you will notice is that this website looks quite different to the one you may be used to. In response to the many questions we have received from our customers over the years, we have built in many new features that will enhance your shopping experience. While navigating the site is intuitive, we've described some of the many new features here.

Herbie’s Spices Newsletter – Winter 2021

Following through on our gradual revision of the Spice Kits, we’ve had a look at the Al Fresco kit.  At our place, outdoor meals often include big sharing platters, which enable those who are hungry to really dig in, and those with bird-like appetites to pick gently at morsels, without any embarrassment about how much is put on, or left on, the plate.  So we’ve

Black Pepper Beef Recipe at Spice Village, Kumily, Kerala, India

Braised Black Pepper Beef, with Chef Manoj at Spice Village, Kumily, Kerala, India Serves 4-6 1kg beef tenderloin, trimmed Masala Marinade 1 tablespoon extra virgin coconut oil ½ cup grated fresh coconut 2 shallots, peeled and sliced 2 teaspoons coriander seeds 5 small dried red chillies, seeds removed and chopped 3 sprigs curry leaves 1 tablespoon crushed black pepper Braising Curry Sauce 1 tablespoon extra virgin coconut

Herbie’s Spices Newsletter – Autumn 2021

We trust that you have all survived Australia’s quiet introduction to the new year. Isn’t it wonderful that, in times of trial and frustration, cooking, eating and sharing bring such consolation? For those of us separated from our loved ones by insurmountable obstacles, we can be encouraged by improving conditions this year.


Herbie makes Avial (South Indian Vegetable Curry) in South India

Herbie loves being in South India, the food and the people. In this video he makes Avial (a South Indian Vegetable Curry). Making lightly spiced meals is one of life’s great pleasures, made all the simpler with our Herbie’s Spices all-natural spice blends.


Herbie’s Newsletter Summer 2020-2021

A world-wide annus horribilis is drawing to a close, and all we want for Christmas is a better year ahead. For many, time spent in confinement has been a time for reflection, communicating with loved ones, and cooking up a storm.


Herbie Makes a Curry in Kumily

In this video, following a short elephant ride, I have the audacity to show my Indian friends at Spice Village how I make my Saturday Curry!


Herbie’s Newsletter Spring 2020

Rose Harrisa Mackerel Spring is a time always associated with flowers.  Cauliflowers, broccoli and broccolini, even cabbage and kale, are all flowers, and it occurred to us that one could make a culinary bouquet by adding rose harissa to these flowers.  We started the experiment with rose harissa sprinkled on cauliflower cheese, then progressed to rose harissa stir-fried with broccolini, and broccoli florets tossed with rose

Why Herbie is Obsessed with Spices

During this time when many of us are isolated, either voluntarily or forced, I thought it would be a good idea to share some of the things I cover at the beginning of a Spice Appreciation Class. As classes are off now, here goes a virtual communication! People often ask why I am so obsessed with spices. This video explains where it all started,

Join the inner circle

Herbie’s Spices Inner Circle fills a need in the community of cooks and food lovers for early-access & upcoming events to all those hard-to-find herbs and spices.

Please enter valid email.