As you all know, one of my culinary goals this year is to try different foods. I’ve been making a lot of Middle Eastern dishes (posts coming soon) but I have also been experimenting a lot with different spices, some old, some new. My local grocery store has expanded their spice collection to include a lot of Middle Eastern and North African spices so I have been playing around with those but I have also revisited a few of the spice that I have that I rarely reach for. Two of which are cumin and turmeric.
I actually use cumin more frequently than turmeric. About a year ago, I stopped using pre-packaged taco seasoning (too much salt) and opted to make my own. Cumin is the main ingredient in taco seasoning so whenever I make ground beef tacos I use that. Turmeric, on the other hand, is a different story. I don’t think I have ever actually used it in a dish until today.
When it comes to trying out new spices, I think tacos are a great recipe to incorporate them into to. You can make a simple chicken taco with lettuce, cheese and sour cream and flavor it with any seasoning you want to try. Since the other ingredients (lettuce, cheese and sour cream) don’t have strong competing flavors you can really get a good taste of what the spice taste like.
For this recipe, I made a simple spice blend (cumin, turmeric, salt, pepper, garlic powder, onion powder, sugar) to season my shrimp tacos. I simply, seasoned the shrimp, sauteed them and threw together some slaw, tomato and cilantro and wrapped it in a flour tortilla. Instead of using salsa, I opted for the ginger, jalapeno cashew sauce that I featured a few posts back. The results were wonderful.
I hope that you consider making this blend. If you do, be aware that turmeric is a bright yellow color and easily stains fingers and clothes. Be careful!