24. Juniper Berries
Unlike most of the spices I’ve mentioned so far, juniper berries have their origins in Europe. Even though they are berries, juniper berries are used as a spice. They have a sharp and tart taste. They are most commonly used to complement wild game, particularly venison and they are also commonly used to flavor gin. There are some other uses of juniper berries, including seasoning pork, beef, stews and some vegetable dishes. The flavor of the berries works especially well with the deep and rich flavors of meat.
23. Kala Jeera (AKA Black Cumin)
Kala jeera is another example of seeds that are used as a spice. Before they are cooked, the seeds can seem a bit unpleasant, with a heavy earthy scent. However, as they cook the scent and taste change, resulting in a nutty flavor. Because of this, kala jeera is often used in breads, in curry and when steaming rice. Kala jeera is preferred over normal cumin in many of these dishes in Indian cuisine, although normal cumin is sometimes used if kala jeera isn’t available.
22. Long Pepper
Historically, long pepper was used in a similar way to black pepper and was just as common. It has many of the same characteristics as black pepper, although long pepper tends to be less harsh and has more complexity, including sweet notes of cinnamon and nutmeg. In modern times, long pepper has almost been forgotten, which is a pity, as long pepper’s sweet heat can complement many dishes in a way that black pepper simply cannot.
21. Nigella Seed AKA Charnushka
Nigella seeds can be a bit confusing, simply because they are known by so many different names. Some of those names include black caraway, black cumin and black onion seeds, even though nigella seeds have no relationship to any of those species. Instead, nigella seeds are a spice all of their own. Typically, nigella seeds are roasted, and they are crunchy and have a taste much like roasted onions.