Exploring Unique Spice Flavors

We generally know what to do with common spices and dried herbs like oregano, basil, cumin and cayenne. But when it comes to unique spices we have not heard of before, spices that seem difficult to incorporate into meals or spices that seem like they have one use, it can be challenging to decode their place in our food or get experimental with them. 

Exploring new flavors with less common spices can be a fun and exciting way to travel the world through your dinnertime meals, all you need is a little guidance in the right direction. This is why we’ve decided to put together a list of five spices that we thought might peak your interest and give you some ideas on where to add them next time you pull them out of your spice cabinet or dispense them from your TasteTro.

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The Art of Homemade Salad Dressings

Looking for a healthier alternative to store-bought salad dressings that you can make on the spot with staple ingredients from your fridge and pantry? We are too! That’s why we came up with this simple and easy tutorial on how to go about incorporating homemade dressings into your weekly meals.


There are two types of dressing:

  • permanently emulsified
  • temporarily emulsified


All that means is that permanently emulsified has all of the ingredients bound together by a natural binding agent such as eggs or mustard. Temporarily emulsified means that the ingredients sit separated when not agitated. This is usually when oil and vinegar are added without an emulsifying agent. These mixtures can be bound together temporarily just by shaking, whisking or blending the ingredients together, but they will not hold together forever and will begin to separate over time.


So let’s get to it!

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Exploring Global Cuisine with TasteTro

From the grills of the Mediterranean to the tandoors of India, TasteTro has a little something to offer everyone. Our global cuisine spice blends and recipes showcase the vast flavor options available to TasteTro explorers. We wanted to take the time to speak to some of the global cuisines we are covering with the launch of the TasteTro Spice System.




With the cool, moist air of Porto to the hot dessert-like climate of Lagos, Portugal has a phenomenal food culture that dates back to the 15thcentury when spice trade routes were beginning to form. As the Portuguese empire began to expand to South America, the coasts of Africa, India and South East Asia, Portuguese food culture began to expand in itself. The addition of spices and exotic ingredients from newly established colonies began to change the face of Portuguese food. Hot chilis, paprika, bay leaves and garlic were some of the aromatics used in Portuguese cuisine and are still used to this day. They can be seen in classic dishes like chicken piri-piri or feijoada.




Italy’s cuisine is described as simple, fresh and only uses four main ingredients to comprise a dish. Its roots date back to the 4thcentury after the fall of the Roman Empire. With Neapolitan pizza from Naples and risotto from Milan, the country’s cuisine is vastly different from region to region. Northern Italian food has Germanic and Roman roots while the south has Arabic and Mediterranean influence that can be seen in dishes such as lasagna. Italian cuisine is heavily herb based and uses very little spice. Classics that use a healthy amount of herbs such as Bolognese sauce or chicken parmigiana were the recipes that we opted for when we were creating the first 100 recipes.


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Healthy Summer Grilling


Barbecuing is one of the best parts of summer. There’s nothing better than the smell of smoky barbecue running through the humid mid-summer air while the kids run through the sprinkler and you are enjoying an ice-cold beer with bae. But what about all of the unhealthy aspects of barbecuing like carcinogens?… Eeek! Those don’t sound good! Carcinogen can cause cancer in living tissue. Way to put a bummer on grilling. We have a few tips to help you avoid those nasty little suckers so that you can continue enjoying your ice-cold beer while you watch the kids wipeout on the wet grass. #parentproblems


  1. Marinade your meats.
  2. Clean your grill well.
  3. Cook in tinfoil.
  4. Decrease cooking time and temperature.
  5. Grill that veg!

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Easter 2019

Any idea what you are serving for dinner this Easter?


We have the best panko herb crusted lamb rack recipe that we REALLY wanted to share with you! We created this recipe on the basis that Easter dinner deserves something more than just the classic turkey dinner we always seem to resort to. Why not change it up? Lamb is in season in the spring, so why not try out a lamb dish instead?


Click Read More for the recipe.


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Spice Cupboard Chaos Solution

Time to empty out the spice cupboard?


When you think about your spice cupboard, do you wince at the thought of opening it? How many millions of half-used taco seasoning packages do you have laying around? Or what about those gourmet spice blends you got for Christmas five years ago, but never wanted to touch for fear of “wasting” them?


Fear no more. We are here to help! We too had fallen victim to spice cupboard chaos! Hence, the creation of TasteTro. With the ability to completely get rid of your entire spice cupboard and put it all into a tiny appliance that is equal to a 20-piece spice rack. Why would you even think twice?

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Holiday Egg Nog

Makes: 1 quart

Time: 15 minutes inactive, 15 minutes active


1 cup heavy cream (33%)

2 cups  whole milk

1 tsp TasteTro Holiday Spice blend

4 egg yolks

¼ cup maple syrup

1 tsp. vanilla

3 oz. spiced rum/ bourbon (optional)


1.    Place the cream, milk and spices into a pot on medium-high heat. Bring to a hard simmer, but not boiling.

2.    Meanwhile, place yolks, maple syrup and vanilla into a medium sized bowl. Whisk until combined (3o seconds).

3.    Temper the eggs with the hot milk by adding 1/3 of the hot liquid while simultaneously vigorously whisking. Once incorporated, add the remainder of the hot liquid.

4.    Pour the egg and milk mixture back into the pot and cook on medium heat. You must constantly move the mixture in a figure 8 design with a spatula.

5.    Cook for a few minutes or until it has thickened up. Don’t allow it to get too hot as the eggs may curdle. Transfer the mixture out of a pot into a bowl to cool the mixture. Strain the mixture if they are lumps. Once cool, add rum/bourbon.

Holiday Entertaining with TasteTro

Count down to the holidays with our best home cook tips for making entertaining a breeze this holiday season!

 1. Premix self-serve cocktails like our Orange Rosemary Fizz. You can treat this cocktail like a punch and make a large bowl.

2. Make things ahead that keep well like our Holiday Egg Nog, Roasted Red Pepper Dip or our Pain D’epices Bread.

3. Go for easy to make appys like our Savoury Shortbread or our Gruyere & Boursin Spinach Dip. They take no time to make and can be    made well in advance.

4. Go for buffet style food versus a sit-down dinner with mulitiple courses. Some of our TasteTro favourites we like to include on our buffet table are our Chimichurri Beef Striploin, Cranberry Walnut Couscous Salad and Hassleback Roasted Potatoes.

5. Make a simple dessert that looks great! Try our Puffed Pastry Wrapped Wine Poached Pears.



All Things Paprika

When you think of paprika, do you think there is just one kind? If the answer is yes, think again!


There are so many varieties of different types of spices and herbs that most may not be aware of. For example, when we see paprika in the grocery store, we are primarily buying American paprika but if we ventured out of the generic grocery store, we would find a plethora of different types of paprika such as Hungarian, Spanish or even smoked. To help educate you on some of the basics, we came up a short list of three different spices that have multiple types and varieties. We are featuring these in three separate articles for easy reading so jump to the next article if you are interested to learn more!


Paprika spice is a blend of different types of capsicum annuum peppers. There are three major countries that produce paprika.


  • Hungarian paprikaalways has a hint of sweet due to the climate it is grown in but ranges from mild to hot.
  • American paprikais sweet, mild and tends to have a more vibrant red colour.
  • Spanish paprika can be less intense than Hungarian and ranges from sweet to bitter and mild to hot. It also comes in smoked specifically designed for Paella.


Some of the TasteTro blends that include our paprika blend are our Piri Piriblend, Vindaloo blend and Chimichurri blend.

All Things Chili

Chili spice is derived from multiple chilis from around the globe and can be blended with different varieties to achieve specific flavour profiles. Here are some examples of different types of chillis that can be used on their own or placed into a blend.


  • Ancho chilis are the dried version of poblano peppers commonly used in Mexican and Southwestern cuisine. They are sweet and smokey in flavour.
  • Chipotle chilis are smoke-dried jalapenos that have a heavy smoky flavour that is used primarily in Mexican cuisine to make adobo sauce.
  • Chili de arbol chilis are very spicy small chilis originating from Mexico.
  • Prik chee fah chilis are what you would think of if you were thinking about thai chilis. They are small but pack a lot of heat. They are used to make different thai chilis.


Currently with TasteTro we are offering a dark chilli blend that we use in our Mexican Fiesta blend, our Adobo seasoning and in our Spicy Cajun blend.


With our launch on the horizon, we have chosen the top 20 spices and herbs to launch with. As we grow, we will be adding more and more variety to our offerings such as different types of chilis, peppercorns and paprikas.