CHRISTMAS OFFER Subscribe to EADT Suffolk today CLICK HERE

Add a touch of Eastern spice

PUBLISHED: 09:36 25 January 2011 | UPDATED: 20:32 20 February 2013

Add a touch of Eastern spice

Add a touch of Eastern spice

Add interest to winter eating with a dash of Mark David's special blend of spices

Add interest to winter eating with a dash of Mark Davids special blend of spices

In this weather, there is nothing better than a warming spicy dish from the Orient or India. I love using chillies but I attach more importance to spices, subtly blended. Let me share with you my favourite blend of spices.

1 tablespoon each of black onion seeds, cumin seeds, coriander seeds, fennel seeds and cardamom pod. These need to be dry-fried (dont add oil), for 3 mins over a medium heat, then pounded in a pestle and mortar to a fine powder. This cooks the spices and develops their flavour.

I use the above spice mix in all sorts of ways, here are some ideas.
A teaspoon of Marks spices in a two-pint recipe of carrot and orange soup is a winner.
Score some chicken drumsticks with a sharp knife and rub some of the spice mix into the cracks, season with salt and grill.
Mix a teaspoon of the spice mix with 2 tablespoons of breadcrumbs and 2 tablespoons chopped onion and a pinch of salt, fry in a little groundnut oil and coat 2 fillets of fresh cod, oven bake 15 minutes.
Make a warming lamb curry and as well as using a decent Madras curry paste, add the same amount of the spice mix.
Now you can get coconut milk and coconut cream easily (available in most supermarkets) the world is your oyster! I tend to use coconut cream in Indian curries and spiced dishes from that part of the world, and coconut milk in dishes from the Far East (Thailand, Vietnam etc). Coconut cream seems to enhance rich curries (particularly lamb) and I use coconut milk for oriental stir fries. In both cases coconut enhances rather than takes over. I have recently found coconut milk powder in some supermarkets, you can make up however much you need without any wastage.
On chilli heat, be careful and dont overdo it. We all have a pain threshold when it comes to chilli heat. I personally like a small kick of chilli to allow the subtlety of other spices to shine through. Dont forget to use fresh ginger root and lots of garlic!

Mark David runs a cookery school The Cooking Experience in Hadleigh. For details of courses visit
or call 01473 827568.


More from Food & Drink

Yesterday, 11:37

If you’re stuck for ideas about where to get your Sunday roast fix this weekend, then give one of these 20 Suffolk pubs a try!

Read more
Tuesday, December 4, 2018

Enjoy a festive tipple from the comfort of your own Suffolk home with these Christmassy cocktail recipes

Read more
Friday, November 23, 2018

Cate Meadows, proud co-owner of HMS Vale, has bold plans for the retired Swedish attack vessel, starting a new life on the tranquil upper reaches of the River Deben | Words: Nick Cottam

Read more
Tuesday, November 20, 2018

Are you more partial to a Bitter or a Mild? Do you know the difference between your Pale Ales and your IPA’s? If you consider yourself to be an ale aficionado then you’ll love this guide to some of our favourite real ale pubs in Suffolk

Read more
Tuesday, November 13, 2018

Cocktails with dinner? Tessa Allingham dines at The Northgate, Bury St Edmunds, where chef Greig Young says good food can be fun

Read more
Friday, October 26, 2018

We all love a good cup of coffee, whether it’s a latte, flat white or just plain black Suffolk is home to a multitude of wonderful local coffee shops. Here are 10 of our favourites with no chains in sight!

Read more
Tuesday, October 23, 2018

As the colder weather starts to creep in, there isn’t a better place to spend a chilly evening than a cosy pub. We pick 15 of the best places in Suffolk where you can warm up next to the fire while trying a pint of local real ale

Read more
Friday, October 5, 2018

As we move towards Christmas Suffolk’s top pubs and restaurants are developing menus that perfectly complement the festive season. Here are 8 you should consider this winter

Read more
Wednesday, September 12, 2018

Retired jockey Eva Moscrop is opening Cortado Espresso Bar on September 15th on Newmarket’s Exeter Road. The first 100 customers will also receive a free coffee!

Read more
Tuesday, September 11, 2018

Suffolk is home to some of the nation’s most beautiful waterways - the River Waveney, the River Deben and the River Stour all offer stunning scenery that captures the heart of locals and visitors alike. There is nothing better than enjoying dinner and a drink by the water, so here are some of the county’s prettiest riverside pubs…

Read more

Newsletter Sign Up

EADT Suffolk Magazine weekly newsletter
Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Our Privacy Policy

Topics of Interest

Food and Drink Directory

Local Business Directory

Search For a Car In Your Area

Property Search