Cooking

Yemeni Spices: The Perfect Blend of Flavour

You’ve probably heard of many popular Middle Eastern spices like turmeric, cinnamon, and saffron. However, you may not have heard of one of the region’s lesser-known but equally potent flavourings—Yemeni spice blends. We take a look at what they are and what they do so you can use them to make your favourite recipes stand out even more.

What Are Yemeni Spices?

When it comes to flavouring food, spices are key. And when it comes to Yemeni spices, there are a few key players that you should get to know. These include cardamom, cumin, cloves, and black pepper. Each of these spices brings a different flavour to the table and can be used in a variety of dishes. For example, cloves are often found in desserts such as apple pie and pumpkin pie. Cardamom is best known for its use in Indian cooking as well as in gingerbreads. Black pepper is an ingredient found in almost every dish out there because of its versatility. Cumin has an earthy taste that works well with beef and chicken dishes alike.

How Are Yemeni Spices Used?

Yemeni spices are used in a variety of ways in Middle Eastern cuisine. They can be used to flavour meats, poultry, and fish. They can be used in vegetable dishes. They can be used in soups and stews. And they can be used to make spice blends like zhug and hawaj. These two spice blends are commonly used in Yemen and Saudi Arabia, respectively. Zhug is made from fresh green chillies, garlic, onion, lemon juice, olive oil, black pepper, cumin seeds and salt. Hawaj is made from roasted cumin seeds, which have been ground with cloves or other warm spices. It’s one of the most popular flavours in Saudi Arabian cooking! These Yemeni spices can also be used as incense because it releases a pleasant aroma when lit. So if you’re looking for an exotic dish that will both taste great and smell good, try using some Yemeni spices!

Creating Fiery Dishes With Yemeni Spices

When it comes to fiery spices, Yemeni spices are some of the best. From cumin to chilli pepper, these spices can really give your dish a kick. If you’re looking to add some heat to your next meal, consider using Yemeni spice blends. Just be warned, a little goes a long way! 

Here are some of our favourite recipes with Yemeni spice blends to get you started. 

Mahi Shish Tawook – A traditional Yemeni fish dish that includes tomatoes, parsley and garlic along with other ingredients like onions and chilli peppers. 

Bouqatah – A vegetable stew that combines carrots, zucchini, potatoes and peas in a tomato sauce along with Yemen’s signature spice blend. 

Kabsa – An Arabian rice-based dish that’s seasoned with cinnamon, ginger and allspice or sometimes saffron for an added kick. 

Sheekh Kabob – A classic grilled chicken recipe served on skewers alongside grilled vegetables and fresh herbs including mint leaves. It gets its name from the Arabic word sheikh, which means nobleman. It is one of Yemen’s most popular dishes.

So try these amazing Yemeni spice blends and prepare a flavourful meal.

main photo: unsplash.com/Tamanna Rumee

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