How to source the best spices

We have already covered what you should be looking for as a sign of quality spices, and what you might be doing wrong so far when building up your collection of flavouring ingredients. But what is one to do when looking for ways of sourcing excellent quality spices? We have some wisdom to impart about the best ways to find great spices.

Buy spices online

If you’re looking for something very specific it might be difficult to track down in shops, so you might want to research cooking spices online and find somewhere you can purchase what you’re looking for. Quality spice merchants will know what they’re talking about so you can ask questions about the products before placing your order. Many online stores carry a huge collection of the best cooking spices, herbs and blends for Indian, Mediterranean, Chinese dishes.

Visit ethnic markets

To find spices for a specific sort of cooking or something that originates from a particular country, you might be best visiting an authentic market for those goods. These prices are likely to be fair and the products will usually be the best quality around, plus they will be restocked much faster than those in supermarkets and other big retailers.

Find a local expert

If you want a single place you can visit to get advice on cooking as well as a full range of high quality spices, you might be able to find a local spice specialist. A merchant who is an expert in the field will be able to help you find what you’re looking for and assure you that the products you’re buying are of the finest quality.

Look out for cons

The best places to buy spices will offer them in small quantities, because they don’t keep well and there is no point buying large amounts that you won’t be able to use in your cooking in a few months’ time. You should also be wary of anyone selling mass-produced spices for inflated prices without any guarantee of quality.

Grow your own

The ultimate solution for you might be to simply grow your own spices and herbs. This is ideal because you know exactly where everything came from and you can be sure that no suspicious ingredients have been added without your knowledge. It’s also easy to keep costs down if you don’t mind waiting months to get the rewards from your efforts.