Oh my, was the weather nice this past weekend! It truly set in a bad case of “Spring Fever” for my family and me. When I think of spring in Amish Country I can’t help but get excited at the thought of stocking up my spice cabinet after a long and cold winter. Yes, this really is my spice cabinet and no, not all of those bottles are full, we are running out of our basics!
The one really good thing about working at the Midwest's Largest Flea Market is easy and quick access to the nearly 900 vendor spaces including Shipshewana Spice Company. If it weren’t for this awesome spice vendor, my family may never eat😊. We are so fortunate to have them as a season vendor year-after-year and they have so many spices to choose from I haven’t nearly touched them all yet.
Not full-blown menus and recipes but the real look at how my family uses these spices in our busy daily schedule to add great flavor to quick family dinners (and in no particular order with the exception of Happy Salt – my go to #1 FAVORITE).
Happy Salt – What can I say, Happy Salt makes everyone and everything HAPPY! This was the very first spice I ever tried from Shipshewana Spice Company as a gift from one of my co-workers. She said oh, you can use it on baked potatoes or really anything and since then, believe me I have. It is my new replacement for what I had always used seasoning salt on before.
You can add it to cooked foods like eggs, veggies, sprinkle it on any burger (or my favorite pork burgers) and grill or broil them, and it is great on garlic bread as well. Another great use is adding this to a fresh avocado for a great tasting guacamole.
It is also a great addition to any breading mixture you use like flour and/or panko bread crumbs. I add it to panko bread crumbs and flour mixed about half-and-half, and batter fried green tomatoes after soaking them in a milk/egg mixture then pan fry them for a great summer treat. If you haven’t tried fried green tomatoes then you haven’t lived yet😊. My husband is already craving that for the summer and you don’t have to wait till the tomatoes are ripe LOL.
Cajun Seasoning – I love heat in my food so if you do as well, this is so good and so much better than some of the other brands I have used. I use this on any meat I want to blacken and/or spice up. It is great for burgers of any kind (turkey, beef or pork), excellent added to chicken or even salmon. I have even sprinkled this one over popcorn for a spicy snack as well.
Mr. Hearts Salt Free Seasoning – May not be official... but the go to spice for any low sodium connoisseur. Uses can be exactly like those of Happy Salt – so like I said before, use it on really anything!
Grilled Salmon with Mr. Hearts Salt Free Seasoning
Gourmet Garlic Seasoning – I use this for mostly homemade garlic bread. I just take my favorite bread (sliced), add a little butter, oil or for speed just a hint of cooking spray. I then sprinkle it on to taste and broil in the oven to my desired darkness. (Now I like my toast dark, my husband not so much and I usually burn it if I use the high setting at least every other time I make it!)
Fajita Seasoning – Great spice for your Fajita of choice. Cut up peppers, onions and chicken and add enough olive oil to coat it all, toss in Fajita Seasoning to taste and let marinate for a couple of hours. I then saute it all in a non-stick pan until the meat and veggies are done and eat it with warm tortilla shells and all the fajita fixings I love including guacamole, sour cream (or I use Greek Yogurt which really saves on calories), tomatoes, lettuce, onions and cheese.
Taco Seasoning – You can add this to your ground beef just like you would the little foil seasoning pouches but this is so much less expensive with all the flavor you could ask for. This is also a great addition to taco soup. My version (again never the same twice) usually includes canned salsa, beef broth, black beans, refried beans, corn, onions, tomatoes and seasoning. This is a great "dump" meal for the crock pot and our family loves it served over corn chips, with cheese and sour cream.
Northwoods 12 Pepper Blend – This was a new spice I tried last year and I do love it. I sprinkle it on pizza or wraps to add a little heat. Helpful Hint: The spice is intensified when cooked, so just be careful if adding it to soups or other cooked foods so you don’t get too much!
Shrimp & Crab Boil – Now I have only cooked this once, but oh so easy. Just look up a Pinterest version of your favorite Shrimp & Crab Boil for the cooking times and ingredients and instead of the spices use Shrimp & Crab Boil and it is so easy. My family loved digging into this treat, that quite honestly, I wouldn’t have likely tried without it being blended together all in one bottle to just add to the pot to my desired taste. (I’ll have to get this one back on our menu again real soon – and how fun if we could have over some friends and make it a party around the campfire some time.)
Italian Seasoning – This is a perfect addition to spaghetti sauces, pizzas, calzones, or any other pizza-like treat. I love to add it to a small serving of olive oil and balsamic vinegar, topped with a little Happy Salt and Cayenne Pepper for a bread dipping oil that is out of this world. Feels like you are having dinner in a fancy Italian restaurant but at a fraction of the expense.
Penne Pasta with Homemade Sauce seasoned with Itialian Seasoning
Cayenne Pepper – I am one who once again likes spice on everything, so I use this on my bread dipping oil (see above), in dip mixes for added heat, in guacamole, on burgers and in batters for fried foods. I also add it to tomato juice for a spicy drink (and a great way to get my veggie serving for the day).
Dark Chili Powder – We have replaced all of our chili powder with this spice. The rich flavor it adds to our chili is awesome. I wish I could share with you a recipe, but we never make anything the same twice, so just use it in place of any chili powder in your family recipe and it will be a hit.
Greek Seasoning – I use this in a meatball recipe I found and usually make to my liking, but it includes ground turkey (or chicken) – I use chicken. This is a healthier meatball than ground beef and for flavor, you add diced, cooked red onion, panko bread crumbs, an egg, garlic and I use Greek Seasoning (in place of the 6 other spices it calls for – so much easier). You can add them all to taste and mix to the consistency of a well-formed meatball. Just saute on all sides and place in the oven at 375 degrees for about 15 minutes or until done. We eat them plain, with pasta, or on French bread for subs.
The next time you are in Amish Country, be sure to stop by the Midwest's Largest Flea Market, and don’t miss the Shipshewana Spice Company booth to try out some of my favorite seasonings or discover some of your own. I promise you’ll love the service, the price, and you might even get a new recipe of your own while there.
What is your favorite Shipshewana Spice and what do you cook with it?
For some great ideas to include on your trip to Amish Country, download our free Shipshewana Trip Planner.