Organic spices in pre-measured packets and a vegetarian recipe

The more vegetarian meals I prepare, the more I rely on herbs and spices to make the food extra tasty.

Because I don't care how healthy it is. If it doesn't taste good, no one is going to eat it. And that's the road to fast food. A road I don't want my family to travel. Ever.

Now, I am a big believer in growing your own spices or popping over to the farmer's market and loading up on fresh sprigs of rosemary or thyme or sage leaves or . . . whatever. But what if you can't? What if you don't have a green thumb or it's the middle of winter, say? Then the trick is to get the best dried spices you can.

And I've found us some lovely, pre-measured, organic ones.

I found the spices over at TSP Spices. All the spices are organic and are available individually or in a well-considered collection.

For example, the Sweet Basics collection contains a nice mix of organic spices: allspice, anise seed, cardamom, Korintje cinnamon, cloves, and nutmeg. Each spice is packaged into 12 one-teaspoon packets, making it incredibly handy for baking (although it does increase your share of the land fill, which is not ideal).

There are all sorts of other collections, too, such as Sun Shine. This one contains 12 one-teaspoon packets each of organic lemon zest and orange zest. Excellent idea.

Once you are done shopping (one for you and one for them and two for you and one for them and three for you and . . . ah, temptation!), do browse the site for recipes. Many are not vegetarian, but many are. And all are linked to the spices, so you can get tons of great ideas. For example, I got this delicious recipe from the Sun Shine page.
Vegetarian recipe for Chili Orange Chocolate Sorbet
½ cup plus 2 TBS cocoa powder (use Dutch process if available)
2 cups water
¾ cups sugar
1 ½ tsp instant espresso powder
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp Organic Chile Pepper (mild, ground)
1 Tbs Organic Orange Zest

Whisk together first three ingredients in medium saucepan over medium high heat until sugar is dissolved and mixture comes to a boil. Stir in remaining 4 ingredients. Refrigerate mixture for at least two hours or overnight. Pour mixture into ice cream maker and process according to manufacturer’s instructions. Once processing is complete, transfer to air tight container and freeze until firm. This can be made up to three days ahead.

Serves 4.