20. Annatto Seed
Annatto seed is another example of a seed that is used as a spice. This seed is interesting, because it is also an ingredient used as a natural coloring agent to give foods (including cheese) a bright orange color. The seeds have a relatively subtle taste, including some sweet and peppery elements. Whenever possible, this spice should be purchased already ground, as the seeds are very resilient and are difficult to grind manually.
Wattleseed is a general term that applies to any of the edible seeds that come from the species in the Acacia family in Australia. The seeds have been a traditional food for the native people (Aborigines) in Australia, although they have become popular as a commercial product and a spice. The seeds have flavors of hazelnut, coffee and chocolate, making them an especially common choice for bread, ice cream, chocolate and many sweet foods. They also work well in many different types of sauce.
18. Green Cardamom
Green cardamom is the more common type of cardamom and some recipes specifically call for this spice. Green cardamom is native to southern India and it comes from the seeds of a plant that is similar to ginger. By weight green cardamom is one of the most expensive spices, however, the spice is also very light and only a little is needed to give a dish the desired flavor. Green cardamom has a complex taste that is spicy and sweet in nature. It also has flavors of lemon, camphor and eucalyptus. The spice is especially common as a way of flavoring meats, and it is also used in mulled wine and similar drinks.
17. Pasilla de Oaxaca Chile
Pasilla de Oaxaca chile is not particularly well known in the United States, but it is getting more popular, especially among people who love their chilies. The chile is interesting because of its smoky flavor. In some ways, it is similar to smoked jalapenos, but the Pasilla de Oaxaca has much more smokiness and less heat. The smokiness also makes the chile work well as a spice. One of the more common uses is in vegetarian dishes, where the smokiness creates a similar flavor to meat, without actually involving meat in the dish.