Posted October 31, 2018

4 Recipes With Global Spices

Eat + Drink

Jars of spices lining a shelf at Philadelphia’s Square 1682.

Spices are an easy way to add interest to any dish—and remind you of faraway locales. The unique flavors in these three dishes draw inspiration from around the globe.

Our 2019 Culinary + Cocktail Trends report reveals that we’ll be seeing more globally-influenced spices in the coming year. Here are some of our favorites recipes that give them a try.

Mexican 7 Spices

By Executive Chef Lauro Romero of King Tide Fish & Shell (Portland, OR)

This combination of spices is a Mexican twist on a classic seven-spice Japanese togarashi. The flavors really shine when used as a rub for fish tacos. Don’t forget the lime—its tangy bite contrasts beautifully with the smoky flavors of this spice blend.



  • 10 slow-smoked and oven-dried guajillo chiles
  • 6 slow-smoked and oven-dried morita chiles
  • 15 limes (zest)
  • 1 cup black sesame seed
  • 2 cups kosher salt
  • ½ cup garlic powder
  • ½ cup onion powder
  1. Smoke chiles for 30 minutes, then dry in the oven at 200°F for about 40 minutes, or until crispy.
  2. Place guajillos, moritas and half the black sesame seeds in a blender—puree until the chiles become powder.
  3. Combine and mix all ingredients in a bowl.
  4. Store in an airtight container.

Note: If a smoker is not available, try finding morita and guajillo powder at the market.

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Togarashi-Crusted Salmon Sandwich

By Executive Chef Shawn Applin of Outlier (Seattle, WA)

Prepare for a Japanese twist on the classic blackened fish sandwich. Replace traditional Cajun seasoning with a togarashi spice blend, then top with an on-trend, homemade mushroom relish.



For the Salmon:

  • 4 5-oz. fillets of salmon
  • 1 tbsp. togarashi spice

For the Miso Aioli:

  • 2 tbsp. light miso
  • 1 cup mayonnaise
  • 1 lemon, juiced

For the Shiitake Mushroom Relish:

  • 10 shiitake mushrooms
  • 1 onion
  • 2 oz. soy sauce
  • ¼ cup chopped cilantro
  • ¼ cup olive oil

For the Mushroom Puree:

  • 10 crimini mushrooms
  • ½ lb. maitake mushrooms
  • 2 cups dried porcini, rehydrated
  • 4 cloves of garlic, chopped
  • 1 cup butter
  • 2 shallots, chopped
  • 1 tbsp. thyme, whole

To Build the Sandwich:

  • Pea vines
  • Potato roll
  1. Dust the salmon fillets with togarashi seasoning and sear in a hot pan until just medium doneness. Do not overcook.
  2. Combine all the ingredients for the miso aioli and set aside.
  3. For the mushroom relish, sauté the onion and garlic until soft. Add the mushrooms. When those are soft, add the soy sauce and cilantro, then set aside.
  4. For the mushroom puree, sauté the cremini and maitake mushrooms with the garlic in butter.
  5. Rehydrate the dried porcini in water and add to the other mushrooms.
  6. Add the thyme and season to taste.
  7. Purée all until smooth and set aside.
  8. Build the sandwich by spreading the aioli on one side and the porcini puree on the other side of the bread.
  9. Top with the salmon, the shiitake mushroom relish and some pea vines that have been dressed with lemon juice and salt.

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Caramelized Sweet Potato

By Executive Chef Damien Giliberti of Outpost (Goleta, CA)

Sweet or savory? How about both. Roasted sweet potatoes make a healthy (and gluten-free!) base for this flavorful dish inspired by spices commonly found in Indian cuisine.



  • 1 whole sweet potato, cut ½ to ¾ inch thick long ways
  • Turmeric yogurt (see recipe below)
  • Garam masala (see recipe below)
  • ½ cup crispy chickpeas (see directions)
  • Olive oil
  • Salt to taste
  • Pepper to taste
  • Dash of sugar

Turmeric Yogurt:

  • 5 lb. (24 oz.) Greek yogurt
  • 1 tbsp. pan-toasted turmeric
  • ½ tbsp. salt
  • ¼ cup lime juice

Garam Masala for the Sweet Potato:

  • 2 . ground cumin
  • 3 tbsp. ground coriander
  • 3 tbsp. ground cardamom
  • 3 tbsp. ground black pepper
  • 2 tbsp. ground cinnamon
  • 1 tbsp. ground clove
  • 1 tbsp. ground nutmeg
  1. Toss cut sweet potatoes in olive oil, making sure that the sweet potato is evenly coated.
  2. Lay the sweet potato on a sheet tray with parchment paper.
  3. Season with salt and pepper and a light dusting of sugar.
  4. Roast the sweet potato at 450°F until caramelized—about eight to 13 minutes.
  5. Place a dollop of turmeric yogurt at the bottom of the plate, and then spread it over the caramelized sweet potatoes.
  6. Finish with drizzled olive oil, sprinkled garam masala, parsley and crispy chickpeas.

Crispy Chickpeas Directions:

  1. Boil a bag of dry chickpeas for about an hour until soft.
  2. Next, strain the chickpeas and let dry for about 30 minutes.
  3. Then fry in oil until crispy—about five to seven minutes.
  4. Then toss in a small amount of salt and garam masala.

Turmeric Yogurt:

  1. Place above ingredients in metal bowl and mix by hand.

(Note: Must be prepared a few hours before use so that the turmeric blooms and develops its bright yellow pigment.)

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Charred Shishito Peppers

By Executive Chef Rich Falbo at Firefly (Washington, DC)

These blackened peppers get a dose of North African spice in the form of green harissa, a blend made of herbs, cumin, serrano peppers, and garlic.



  • 8 oz. shishito peppers
  • 2 oz. butter, melted
  • 2 oz. green harissa (see recipe below)
  • 1 tsp. bene seed or sesame seed
  • 1 tsp. smoked salt
  • Salt to taste
  • Pepper to taste

Green Harissa Ingredients:

  • 1 tbsp. ground cumin
  • 1 bunch cilantro, cleaned and stemmed
  • 1/2 bunch parsley, cleaned and stemmed
  • 3 serrano peppers, seeded
  • 5 garlic cloves
  • 1/4 cup preserved lemon
  • 1/8 cup orange juice
  • 1/8 cup lemon juice
  • 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • Heat a sauté pan until smoking hot.
  • Toss peppers with melted butter, salt and pepper.
  • Add to pan and blister until charred. (Note: Beware of flare-ups with your pan. Do not set fire to the peppers.)
  • Remove peppers and toss with green harissa in a bowl while still hot.
  • Sprinkle with smoked salt and bene seed.

Green Harissa Directions:

  • Combine ingredients in a blender or food processor.
  • Blend until smooth.

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