The Basics Box
Go back to the basics with these three spices for easy and mindful cooking.
Tips for Success
- Clumping is normal as we don’t use anti-caking agents or salt. If clumping occurs simply break apart with your hands before seasoning.
- Try not to pour spices out of the jar over a steaming pot or pan as the steam can get in the jar and cause further clumping.
- Grind whole spices just before cooking for maximum flavor.
- Look at the individual product page for tips on how to use each spice.
- Wild Black Cumin Seeds
- Oasis Coriander Seeds
- Late Harvest Black Peppercorns
In the steep and jagged Hindu Kush Mountants of Afghanistan, a rare and ancient varietal of cumin—a botanical cousin to the common variety—grows wildly, and according to Milkstreet, black cumin derives its extra warmth and pungency from its “native terroir.” Local villagers handpick these highly climate-resilient seeds, rarely seen outside of local communities until recently, by hand and dry them under the blistering Afghan sun to concentrate flavors even more. We work with Roots of Peace, an organization that helps the communities of war-torn areas prosper through agricultural export.
The Faiyum Oasis is fertile basin of the Western Desert, southwest of Cairo in the Nile River Valley. Its vast Lake Qarun—the third-largest in Egypt—nourishes many crops, including figs, grapes, olives and coriander, an herb prized by ancient Egyptians as a digestive aid and rheumatism reliever (coriander seeds were found in Egyptian tombs). Our coriander is organically grown and harvested two weeks after the seeds of the bright-green, slender-stalked plant turn light brown. The seeds are then dried under the hot sun to develop their lemony flavor and floral sweetness.
Known as “black gold,” peppercorns are one of Vietnam’s largest exports. Berries are often picked green to prevent insects and birds from eating mature fruit, but ours are vine-ripened an extra two weeks under the careful watch of our farmers—a ruby-red hue signals peak fruity and floral notes, as well as a smooth, lingering heat. We source from farms in Quang Tri, where Roots of Peace trains villagers to replace live minefields—more bombs were dropped in this province than in WWI and WWII combined—with this flourishing crop.
How old are these spices?
We purchase what we need every year right after the spices are harvested. These spices are as fresh as you can get. They are not sitting in a warehouse for multiple years. The oldest spices we carry will be one year old compared to the commodity market which warehouses spices for 10+ years before selling them to you.
Why are these called The Basics Box?
Cumin, coriander and black pepper are the backbone of many dishes across continents. Cumin and coriander often go together and are used early in the dish while black pepper is best to use as a finishing spice. Elevate your cooking quickly with these 3 super powered spices.
Do you have recipes to go with these blends?
Yes! We have an ever expanding recipe library of chef tested recipes. Click here to learn more. Please shoot us an email if there are any recipes you would like to see at email@example.com.