This spice blend reflects medieval trade and tastes, but is very much usable today. You may recognize its granddaughter recipe in Quatres Epices. This may be used in savory dishes (braised or roasted meat) or as a baking spice. Also, following Swedish and Arabic custom with cardamom, add a spoonful to ground coffee before brewing. I have cooked with and liked this blend for years. It also makes a nice gift, bottled alone or packed with related ingredients. Grains of paradise, galingale and long pepper (illustrated above) are aromatic, spicy, and worth a search. If you can't find them, use some cardamom, more ginger and more black pepper. Adapted from Livre fort excellence de cuysine, 1555. —Nancy
1 cup (128g)
(about 38g) ground ginger
(about 30g) ground cinnamon
(about 22g) ground black peppercorns
(about 15g) ground nutmeg
(about 7g) ground clove
(about 7g) ground galingale (if n/a, use more ginger)
(about 7g) ground grains of paradise (if n/a, use cardamom)
(about 7g) ground long pepper (if n/a, use more black pepper)
In This Recipe
Get whole spices if you can and grind in a coffee grinder or blender. Measure & mix.
If whole spices are not available, use the freshest ground ones you can get. Measure & mix.
Put in air-proof container, and keep in a dark, cool cupboard for up to a year.
If you want to make less or more, pick another measure (e.g., teaspoons) but maintain the proportions used here.