Tag Archive: spices

  1. Spice Appreciation with Herbie & Liz

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    Spice Appreciation with Herbie & Liz

    Introducing a unique spice appreciation and spice blending workshop with Ian & Liz Hemphill of Herbie’s Spices on Sunday 23rd August 2020 from 10:00am to 1:00pm.

    Spices are quite literally On Trend as never before. We see spices in the majority of restaurant and café menus, the amazing colours and textures of spices feature in food magazines, and even restaurants and boutique food outlets call themselves by spice names to reinforce their foodie credentials.
    Nonetheless, mystery has surrounded spices, their origins and uses for thousands of years. However, how much do you really know about these wonders of nature, and the best ways to buy, store and use them in everyday meals?

     

    In this workshop, Ian “Herbie” Hemphill, author of the award winning

    Spice & Herb Bible

    will take you on a magical mystery tour of the world of spices.

    Workshop participants will learn just what spices and herbs really are, the different roles for using fresh or dried, and why most spices are dried to get their flavours.
    Importantly, spice blending will be explained, showing how 9 identical spices can be used to make four completely different spice blends. These blends will then be used hands-on when you collaborate to make four different recipes, featuring the flavours of Morocco, China, India and the Middle East.

  2. Herbie’s Spice Appreciation – with bonus Gin making kit

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    Herbie’s Spice Appreciation – with bonus Gin making kit

    This is the comprehensive introduction to spices that almost needs no introduction!

    In this two-hour session, Ian Herbie Hemphill, will navigate through the exotic waters of the history of the spice trade, while Liz prepares tasty spiced morsels. You will learn about many different spices, their origins, and how they are processed and traded. Most importantly, Herbie and Liz will de-mystify their flavours and explain the principles behind spice blending, so you will feel comfortable using them in everyday cooking.

    In addition to this, Herbie will show you how to use his beautiful quality botanicals to create your own Gin at home.

    Included in this class

    Herbies ‘Ginspiration Kit’ so you can go home and brew up a batch (RRP $69.95)

    – A glass of Herbie’s own gin and tonic on ice

    – An array of delicious spicy nibbles!

    PARKING

    St Margaret’s Car Park at 417-435 Bourke Street, Surry Hills is a great option for parking with 80 spaces available and a 5-minute walk from the Cooking School. Casual parking rates after 5 pm are $4/hour.

    https://goo.gl/maps/wjqrwSKXBFF2

  3. Herbie’s Newsletter Autumn 2020

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    NEWSLETTER                                                                                                                                                                AUTUMN 2020

    Our Best Wishes

    The start of this New Year and new decade has been memorable for all the wrong reasons, and our hearts go out to all those who have been directly and indirectly affected by the extreme weather and terrible fires.  A fire that started in the same road as our factory mercifully went in the other direction and left us with just ash to clean up.  Others have not been so lucky.

    Herbie’s Spices Retail Area

    Over the past few years, some of you have gradually found our little retail counter at the door of our Charmhaven factory, where you can tell us your wish list and we will hurry to the dispatch area to bring what you want.  This year brings exciting changes, as we do a little re-shuffle of our space and create a proper retail area where you can browse, ask questions, and take your time. We look forward to welcoming more of you as word gets around.  We’re just minutes from the freeway, should you happen to be driving between Sydney and Newcastle!

    Chicken Biryani

     

    Our Indian Adventure

    Our year began with another trip to India with a happy group of seventeen lovely travellers.  Exploring just the south of this fascinating continent gave us a good experience of the regionality of Indian food, from the peppery Chettinad to the French-inspired Pondicherry cuisine (home of our delicious Vadouvan curry blend), and the coconut-rich seafood of Kerala.  Is there another Indian adventure in the pipeline?  Well, maybe; if you fancy a trip in March/April 2021, let us know.

     

     

     

     

     

    Aloo Gobi

     

    Aloo Gobi Spice Blend

    Our Indian sojourn in 2019 was to the north in autumn.  Seasonal food was abundant, and we encountered aloo gobi everywhere we went.  (Aloo = potato, gobi = cauliflower.  Look, you are speaking Hindi!)  We all came home wanting to cook this delicious vegetarian dish, without too much bother, so Herbie did his thing and came up with an Aloo Gobi spice blend.  The recipe is conveniently on the back of the pack.

     

     

     

     

    Golden Grill Spice with Turmeric

     

     

    Golden Grill Spice

    We were sad to see the demise of Healthy Life stores in NSW; they had been customers of ours for many years, and they had asked us to create a turmeric-rich blend especially for them.  Rather than let a perfectly good blend fall into oblivion, we have given it a little tweak and re-named it Golden Grill spice. Have it with vegetable stir-fries, grilled white meats, and in your autumn soups, to add the goodness of turmeric to your diet.

     

     

     

     

     

     

    One Pot Wonders Spice Kit

     

     

    One Pot Wonders

    Also new this season is a simple little $25.00 kit in a pale green box, that we have called One Pot Wonders.  For those time-poor times when you need something in a hurry, have a few of these little stars in the freezer.  And on a cool autumn day, set aside a bit of time to cook a few of these delicious meals for later.  With packs of our Tagine Spice blend, Herbs de Provence, Curry Mix with whole seeds, and Italian Herbs, you have a world of flavour at your fingertips!

     

     

     

     

    Box of Ideas Autumn 2020

     

     

    Box of Ideas

    Speaking of kits, naturally we have our brand new Box of Ideas for this autumn.  Lavender, ajowan, peppermill blend, Turkish spice mix and American Spicy BBQ are featured this time, with lots of easy, tasty recipes to share with friends and family.  In the autumnal russet-red box, it’s $25.00 plus postage.

     

     

     

     

     

    QR Code to Scan

     

     

    Labels & QR Codes

    What’s happened to the labels?  Yes, you’re not imagining it: the labels definitely have a different background colour.  Here’s the reason:  the new labels are actually the original shade that we started with in 1997.  Over the years, the shade gradually crept to the almost-dull yellow of 2019, until we suggested to our printer that the original pale cream background be re-instated.

    What’s that funny square filled with squiggles on the back of our pack?  It’s called a QR code, and here’s how you use it.  Scan it with your smart phone and it will take you to more information about that product on our website.  You’ll find more details and, at this stage, recipes for most products.  (Give us time and we’ll fill it with even more good things!)

     

     

    Postage Calculations

    A great many of you take advantage of our website to order your spices.  It’s the way of the world, ordering whatever you want online, and many online stores offer free shipping.  Does anyone really believe that shipping is free?  A 500g Express Post bag costs over $12.00 at the Post Office – a little cheaper for us as we buy hundreds at a time and get a little discount.  Now let’s face it, someone has to pay for that postage.  If a vendor offers free shipping, you can be pretty sure that shipping is loaded into the price.  We prefer to give you the honest price of each product, and show you that the postage is added at the end.

    Our postage is calculated at a flat $8.80, plus 22 cents per pack (incl. GST).  It’s   impossible to have a perfect system with online orders – sometimes we are a bit ahead, sometimes we lose a bit.  If you order just one pack of spice, you are possibly going to pay more for postage than you do for the spice.  Think carefully whether there might be one or two other spices you could use, to make the postage more reasonable for what you’re spending.

    Upcoming classes: We’re visiting old friends at The Essential Ingredient in Surry Hills at 11.30 on 8th March, and other old friends, The Sydney Seafood School, for an evening blending and cooking class on 20th April.  Why not join us? To book, just click here: Sydney Seafood School and use promo code/voucher HERBIES for a 20% discount.

    Happy Spicing,                                                              Herbie and Liz

  4. Herbie’s Spice Appreciation at Essential Ingredient, Surry Hills

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    Herbie’s Spice Appreciation – with bonus Gin making kit

    PRESENTED BY THE COOKING SCHOOL AT THE ESSENTIAL INGREDIENT SURRY HILLS
    About the class

    This is the comprehensive introduction to spices that almost needs no introduction!

    In this two-hour session, Ian Hemphill, otherwise known as ‘Herbie’ will navigate through the exotic waters of the history of the spice trade. You will learn about many different spices, their origins, and how they are processed and traded. Most importantly, Herbie will de-mystify their flavours and explain the principles behind spice blending, so you will feel comfortable using them in everyday cooking.

    In addition to this Herbie will show you how to use his beautiful quality botanicals to create your own Gin at home.

    Included in this class:
    – Herbies ‘Ginspiration Kit’ so you can go home and brew up a batch (RRP $69.95)
    – A glass of Herbies own gin and tonic on ice
    – An array of delicious spicy nibbles!

  5. HERBIE’S SPICES SPRING PICNIC SPREAD IN BOWRAL

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    HERBIE’S SPICES SPRING PICNIC SPREAD

    Add a little spice to your spring picnic with a flavour infused spread of Herbie’s spiced recipes… including a Herbie’s Spiced Gin!

    Join Liz & Ian “Herbie” Hemphill (author of the award winning Spice & Herb Bible) on a magical mystery tour of the world of spices. Watch & learn about fresh vs dried herbs & spices, how best to extract flavour and create 4 different spice blends from 9 identical spices before putting your new know-how to use… hands-on spice blending & menu making!

    Plus, if that’s not enough spice for one picnic… just add Gin!
    Take in tips as Herbie demonstrates how to make your own spiced Gin using Herbie’s Ginspiration Spice Mix.

    Class menu includes

    • Moroccan Chermoula Chicken Kebabs
    • Moroccan Quinoa Salad
    • Chinese Spiced Ham
    • Middle Eastern Muhamarra Dip
    • Middle Eastern Quick Flatbread
    • Indian Sweet & Spicy Beer Nuts
    • Sample Herbie’s Spiced Gin & Tonic

    At the end of this flavour infused class guests will come together to enjoy a picnic spread they have collectively prepared… complete with a refreshing glass of Herbies Spiced Gin & Tonic.

    Proceeds raised from this class will be donated to the
    Your Angel NAO for Kids robotics program 
    Providing interactive learning & development opportunities for local children living with Autism, developmental, social, emotional or behavioural challenges

    Available for purchase on the day:
    Herbie’s award winning The Spice & Herb Bible (Third Edition), $40
    Herbie’s Spices Ginspiration Spice Kit, $65

  6. Spices & More in South India Jan-Feb 2020

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    THIS TOUR IS NOW FULLY BOOKED.

    Watch this space in case we do one in 2021.

    Spices and More … in South India With Herbie and Liz

    January 27th – February 15th 2020 (20 nights)


    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!

    With places filling rapidly for our January 2020 Spices & More Tour to India, we would like to remind interested travellers that the cut off date for confirming bookings is 14th October 2019. We will only take a small group of no more than 18, so travellers are assured of the best attention.

    Why a Spices & More Tour?

    Explore India and enter the exciting and historic world of exotic spices that drew the early explorers from Portugal, Holland, France and England to this cradle of the spice trade, guided by Australia’s own spice specialists, Herbie and Liz.

     

     

    Visits to India’s famous chilli market in Guntur, the largest chilli market in the world, before heading down the east coast to French influenced Pondicherry, the historic Hindu ruins of Hampi and the majestic Hindu temple in Madurai. From farms in Tamil Nadu we head up the hills to Kumily, the home of cardamom and pepper, then to historic Cochin to experience the steamy spice-rich regions and markets of the South.

     

     

     

     

    See fresh green peppercorns being hand picked  from this tropical climbing vine native to the south of India.

     

     

     

     

     

    In this land of great contrasts and unforgettable images, India’s unpredictability is part of its charm.  Will we see splendidly-attired temple elephants in Cochin, or a colourful wedding procession as we arrive at our hotel?  These were some of the unexpected delights encountered on previous tours.

     

     

     

     

     

    COMMENTS FROM PREVIOUS TRAVELLERS:

    Jane:”a fantastic trip with wonderful, lasting memories and amazing experiences.”

    Anne: What can I say but  wow! and thank you , it was a great trip

    Peter: you never know I could certainly do it again.

    Doug: I had a GREAT TIME and would travel with you anywhere any time

    Hazel: The trip was splendid and surpassed all my expectations.

    To receive the complete itinerary, and booking information please email: herbiesspices@icloud.com

     

  7. Herbie’s Newsletter Spring 2019

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    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 coast of India, and their eating experiences resulted in the Vadouvan curry – mild in chilli heat, but rich in onion and curry leaf – being taken back to their homeland.  Indian migrants took their delicious spicy food with them to Africa, east to the South-East Asian countries, and to Fiji. Local versions such as Massaman, Rendang and Laksa evolved.  Even Japan eventually opened up to curry flavours, making their Katsu mild and sweet, based on a roux and thickened with sweet pureed carrot.  The distinctive lightness of Thai food was not compromised when curry arrived on the menu – the robust Indian flavours were modified to make the Red and Green curries that are still so very distinctly Thai.

    Curry’s chance of world domination stopped at the shores of America, the original home of chillies, where curry is still regarded with some suspicion.

    There is a wide belief that a curry is hot with chilli, which is not necessarily the case.  There are many flavour elements from other spices that go to make up a curry masala (mix). We’ve made a sort of heat ladder to help you work out which curry might suit you best, starting with the mildest at 1 and growing to the hottest at 10.  Anything from 1 to 3 is perfect for small children, and Vindaloo at 10 will delight and satisfy. Chilli lovers can always add extra chilli if they wish.

     

    1. Mild Curry, Vegetable Curry
    2. Yellow Curry, Katsu
    3. Butter Chicken
    4. Rogan Josh, Laksa
    5. Medium Madras, Malay
    6. Curry Mix, Massaman, Vadouvan
    7. Red Curry, Green Curry
    8. Chettinad
    9. Kashmiri
    10. Vindaloo

    It is tempting to think of a curry as something distinctly Indian or Asian.  If that’s the case, what about your good old curried egg sandwich, surely as British as a cucumber sandwich?  Because of the clever blending of spices, a curry blend can be used to enhance many foods that don’t need to be categorized into a country of origin.  The other night, we seasoned some chicken thigh fillets with Chettinad spice mix and barbecued them with excellent results.  It’s always good to keep an open mind when approaching your spice blends.

    Speaking of blends, the availability of flawless seasonal cauliflower led to a batch of soup recently, which was flavoured with our dual-personality spice mix known both as Balmain-Rozelle Spice and Sydney Spice.  Wanting a bit more oomph in the flavour, we added Tempero Baiano, which has some of the same ingredients as Sydney Spice, but with stronger base notes to give a little more importance to the final flavour of the soup.  The result was delicious!

     

     

    All around us are labels telling us what is not in various products … gluten-free, GMO-free, dairy-free, salt-free, sugar-free, fat-free, artificial additive-free, etc.  A label could be full of statements of what is not included while not actually saying what is in the product!  We believe that we should tell you exactly what you are getting, and let you deduce what is not there, so on our labels you will find a complete list of the spices used to make a blend. Did you know that the ingredients listed on a label are required by law to be in descending order by weight?  When you see blends whose first ingredient is salt, it should be an alarm bell, especially if a generic mention of “spices” is the last on the list!

     

     

     

     

    What’s new at Herbie’s? It is time to discover our Yellow Chilli Flakes, which give you even more choice and flexibility when it comes to cooking with chilli. Particularly sought-after in north Indian and Himalayan cooking, the heat rating is a piping-hot 9 out of 10. We are sad that we have been unable to continue the beautiful Black Garlic bulbs which had us so excited very recently, due to a quality issue that we’re working on.  We are going to leave the recipe for the amazing black garlic marinade on our website, so that when you find some of this magic ingredient elsewhere, you can still make this marinade which is enhanced by Herbie’s Spices Urfa Biber, porcini powder, coriander and sweet paprika.

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    Also brand new is a fabulous barbecue rub that we’ve called American Spicy BBQ Rub.  Featuring the rich earthiness of Urfa Biber, as well as porcini, smoked paprika and onion, it’s immediately jumped to the top of the list of favourites in our household.

     

     

     

     

     

    This season’s Spring Box of Ideas continues our mission of increasing your spice vocabulary with products that may extend your repertoire with pleasing results.  Our pretty spring-green box contains Cajun spice mix (possibly an old favourite), as well as Fennel Pollen, Korean Red Pepper Flakes, and Turmeric Chai.  We’ve had fun creating recipes for this season – our gloriously golden Turmeric Chai panna cotta is a winner!

     

     

     

     

    We are watching the price of star anise, waiting for price rises and shortages.  The reason? Star anise is the source of shikimic acid, the key ingredient in the anti-flu drug we know as Tamiflu. According to Dr Ian Musgrave, Pharmacology Senior Lecturer at University of Adelaide, around 90% of China’s star anise production is going into making Tamiflu.  So hoard your culinary star anise while you can, but don’t fool yourself that you can self-medicate to prevent the flu – it’s a very complicated scientific process.

     

    Earlier this year, we promised to re-think our ever-popular Barbecue Spice Kit. A complete makeover was timely, given so many of our splendid new products, and this kit now contains: American BBQ, Bill’s Steak Rub, Chermoula, Aussie BBQ, Creole, Sydney Spice and Smokey BBQ.  There are recipes included, as always, but really, it’s so simple – just add the spice, cook and enjoy!  Just in time for Christmas, this will make a bloke in your life very happy.

     

     

     

     

    Happy Spicing,

     

     

    Herbie and Liz

     

  8. SPICE TRAIL WITH IAN “Herbie” HEMPHILL: MARVELLOUS MIDDLE EAST

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    Julie’s Place is very excited to announce a wonderful long lunch with herb and spice guru, Ian “Herbie” Hemphill.

    Ian, author of “Spice & Herb Bible 3rd Edition”, among other respected books, will take you on a journey through the Middle East to learn about and experience their use of spices. And while he does, Julie Goodwin will cook for you the dishes that bring the stories to life. The lunch will consist of multiple delectable courses with wines.
    Don’t miss out on this incredible opportunity to experience a journey through the world of spice with a peerless expert. And a beautiful lunch as well!

     

  9. Treat Your Dad This Father’s Day

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    Gentlemen, start your spices!

     Father’s Day gift ideas from Herbie’s Spices

    Dads are often hard to buy for, so at Herbie’s Spices we have put together three spice kits that will have Dad inspired this Father’s Day.

    Barbecue Kit: A kit of 7 Herbie’s spices (Sydney Spice, Chermoula, Smokey BBQ, American Spicy BBQ Rub, Bill’s Steak Spice, Aussie BBQ Spice, Creole Spice Mix) with recipes to inspire and delight. $38.00

    Thrilling Grilling (Barbecue for Blokes): six popular spice blends (Tasty Meat Sprinkle, Shish Kebab Spice, Tunisian Spice, Pepper Steak Mix, Creole spice mix, Garlic Steak mix) with easy recipes for Rissoles, Pepper Steak, Swordfish Grill, Lamb Kebabs, and more in a red box. $38.00

    Ginspiration Spice Kit:

    MAKE YOUR OWN GIN! Making your own bespoke gin can be fun and satisfying if you have the right botanicals.
    Herbie’s Spices Ginspiration Spice Kit, combined with a vodka of your choosing, is a great way to commence your gin journey. In a blue box $65.00

    First, make your mix using the botanicals enclosed;
    Juniper Berries, Coriander Seeds, Rose Petals, Orange Peel Pieces, Orris Root Granules, Grains of Paradise, Cubeb Peppercorns, Lavender Flowers, Pink Peppercorns and Cinnamon Quills.
    Allow to steep for 3 days, strain into a clean bottle, and drink.

    Cheers!

  10. Spice Appreciation, Hill St Grocer, Devonport, TAS

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    Spice Appreciation Class

    Introducing an informative spice appreciation class with Ian “Herbie” & Liz Hemphill of Herbie’s Spices.
    Spices are quite literally on trend as never before. We see spices in the majority of restaurant and café menus, the amazing colours and textures of spices feature in food magazines, and even restaurants and boutique food outlets call themselves by spice names to reinforce their foodie credentials.Nonetheless, mystery has surrounded spices, their origins and uses for thousands of years. However, how much do you really know about these wonders of nature, and the best ways to buy, store and use them in everyday meals?In this Spice Appreciation class, Ian “Herbie” Hemphill, author of the award winning Spice & Herb Bible, will take you on a magical mystery tour of the world of spices, while Liz prepares delectable tastings. Herbie will navigate through the exotic waters of the history of the spice trade. You will learn about many different spices, their origins, and how they are processed and traded. Most importantly, Herbie will de-mystify their flavours so you will feel comfortable using them in everyday cooking.Your ticket includes entry into our lucky door prizes giveaways at the event.Date: Friday 2 August 2019

    Time: 5.30m to 7.30pm

    Cost: $35 per person

  11. Spice Appreciation in Conversation in Hobart

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    Spice Appreciation Class

    Introducing an informative spice appreciation class with Ian “Herbie” & Liz Hemphill of Herbie’s Spices.Spices are quite literally on trend as never before. We see spices in the majority of restaurant and café menus, the amazing colours and textures of spices feature in food magazines, and even restaurants and boutique food outlets call themselves by spice names to reinforce their foodie credentials.Nonetheless, mystery has surrounded spices, their origins and uses for thousands of years. However, how much do you really know about these wonders of nature, and the best ways to buy, store and use them in everyday meals?

    In this Spice Appreciation class, Ian “Herbie” Hemphill, author of the award winning Spice & Herb Bible, will take you on a magical mystery tour of the world of spices. You will learn about many different spices, their origins, and how they are processed and traded. Most importantly, Herbie will de-mystify their flavours and explain the principles behind spice blending, so you will feel comfortable using them in everyday cooking.

    Date: Tuesday 30 July  2019

    Time: 6pm to 8pm

    Location: Royal Hobart Yacht Club

    Cost: $35 per person

  12. Spices at The Cook’s Workshop, Dural

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    Spices at The Cook’s Workshop, Dural

    Introducing a unique spice appreciation and spice blending workshop with Ian Hemphill of Herbie’s Spices.
    Spices are quite literally On Trend as never before. We see spices in the majority of restaurant and café menus, the amazing colours and textures of spices feature in food magazines, and even restaurants and boutique food outlets call themselves by spice names to reinforce their foodie credentials.
    Nonetheless, mystery has surrounded spices, their origins and uses for thousands of years. However, how much do you really know about these wonders of nature, and the best ways to buy, store and use them in everyday meals?In this workshop, Ian “Herbie” Hemphill, author of the award winning Spice & Herb Bible, will take you on a magical mystery tour of the world of spices. Workshop participants will learn just what spices and herbs really are, the different roles for using fresh or dried, and why most spices are dried to get their flavours.
    Importantly, spice blending will be explained, showing how 9 identical spices can be used to make four completely different spice blends. These blends will then be used hands-on when you collaborate to make four different recipes, featuring the flavours of Morocco, China, India and the Middle East. 
     
    Herbie has long been the nickname of Ian Hemphill, one of Australia’s foremost culinary herb and spice experts.

    Herbie spent his childhood surrounded by herbs and spices, when his parents, John and Rosemary Hemphill, were pioneering the herb and spice scene in the 1950s.
    Forty Five years of working in the industry, including face-to-face lectures to groups from the general public, industrial brokering, manufacturing and marketing, has made Herbie a well-respected and popular figure amongst his peers, in Australia and overseas. He now enjoys sharing his extensive experience and knowledge with his customers at Herbie’s Spices.