Mmmmm Smoky Spices …

I was at the Spice Terminal  (a shop at the Reading Terminal Market in downtown Philly) the other day and here’s my catch!

Over the years I have used dried, ground chipotle peppers a lot because I cook vegetarian meals at home most of the time and, having grown up in a home where German cooking was a mainstay, I sometimes miss the smoky flavors of bacon and sausage.  The spicy-smoky kick of chipotles often stands in very well!  But … and this is difficult to admit … sometimes a dish would taste best if it were robust and smoky but not necessarily spicy hot.  (Also, I think some guests would enjoy eating at my house more.)

For some years, I imagined smoking some red bell peppers and then drying them myself … and then I discovered Spanish paprika!  Eureka, someone else got there first and I am so glad they did!!  It is now an essential ingredient on my spice shelf.  So, the other day I was pulling a bag of Spanish paprika off the hook when I happened to glance at the bags hanging nearby.  Oh. My. Gosh.  Smoked garlic powder??  Smoked black pepper?!?!?  There were a couple of others, I think, but my mind flooded over at that point and I grabbed those two and went dashing over to the counter to pay up before someone pinched me … and there they are on my cutting board, looking pretty as a picture!  (You can hardly imagine how they smell, let me tell you!!)

Knitting is known for being stretchy and I am now going to stretch it into this post: doesn’t the bag of pepper look kind of earthy-greenish?  Wouldn’t those three colors combine to make an excellent knitted product?  I wonder where I can find yarns to match my spices …

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