I learned this version of the Moroccan spice blend at a holiday pie and tart class at the San Francisco Baking Institute. The name translates as “the head of the shop;” each spice shop will concoct its own blend from up to 50 ingredients. We used it for a savory tart of butternut squash, carrots, and onions. Use it as a spice rub for a slow-roasted pork shoulder or barbecued ribs. I could not help myself and added 2 whole home-dried cayenne chilies that I ground up with the other spices. If you like spice, I recommend the addition—try a half teaspoon of ground cayenne, more or less to taste.
Makes about 1/2 cup
- 3 g (3 teaspoons) whole coriander seeds
- 3.5 g (1 1/2 teaspoons) whole black peppercorns
- 3 g (1 1/2 teaspoons) whole allspice
- 2 g (1 teaspoon) whole cumin seeds
- .5g (1/2 teaspoon) whole cloves
- .5 g (1/2 teaspoon) dried lavender flowers
- 2 whole dried cayenne chilies
- 4 g (2 teaspoons) ground ginger
- 3 g (1 1/2 teaspoons) ground cinnamon
- 2.5 g (1 1/4 teaspoons) ground turmeric
- 2 g (1 1/4 teaspoons) freshly grated nutmeg
- In a medium skillet over low heat, stir and cook the coriander, peppercorns, allspice, cumin, cloves, and lavender flowers until lightly toasted and fragrant. Immediately pour into a bowl or onto a plate to cool.
- Grind the cooled spices with the cayenne chilies into a powder in a spice grinder (such as a coffee grinder dedicated to spices). Be careful when you open the lid so that you don’t get a big inhale of hot chili.
- In a bowl, mix the freshly ground spices together with the ginger, cinnamon, turmeric, and nutmeg. Transfer to a clean jar and store in the freezer to use as needed.