Tag Archives: spices az

Maldon Sea Salt – Item of the Day

Every day I bring you an item on Amazon that I personally use or has been purchased by many members of the audience and I have researched enough to recommend.

Today’s TSP Item of the day is Maladon Sea Salt.  I just discovered this stuff and wonder where the hell it has been all my life!  What does it taste like, it tastes like salt, nothing more.

It is pure sea salt which many of us consider more healthy that typical table salt but that is not the magic either.  No it is all about the texture!  I am not sure how they do it but these salt flakes are in like little flaky pyramid like shapes.

I like them so much I am adding a second salt box to our counter top!  Why, this stuff is expensive compared to say typical sea salt or kosher salt which I use for most cooking.  Again the magic is the texture not the taste.

So I use this as a finishing salt which so happens to be the way most chefs use it.  On the top of a steak is pretty great and it is really good on something like sauteed vegetables or on a salad.  In addition to great salty flavor it adds an amazing crunch in such a cool way.

My links go to a twin pack, as I see it as the best value at 11.80 with free shipping on prime.  If you want you can order a single box for only 4.95 but that is considered an “add on order” by Amazon because it is such a small order, but if you are going to be ordering at least 25 dollars that is also and option.

Also I have not tried it yet, but I also now found out that they have a smoked version of this salt and I will be trying it on my next order.  So give Maladon Sea Salt a try and I think you will be pleased with your results.

Remember you can always find the TSP Item of the day by just going to TspAz.com and by shopping at TspAz.com anytime you shop online you help support TSP and the work we do here no matter what you buy.

Mr. Coffee Electric Coffee Grinder – Spice Grinder – Item of the Day

coffeeEvery day I bring you an item on Amazon that I personally use or has been purchased by many members of the audience and I have researched enough to recommend.

Today’s TSP Amazon Item of the day is the Mr. Coffee Electric Coffee Grinder.  And yes it does a bang up job grinding coffee and occasionally I grind up some Mai Thai Coffee and drop it in my french press, but that is not my primary use for this tool.

To me this is the greatest ever dried vegetables and spice/herb grinder you can get your hands on for under 20 bucks.  In fact for Prime members this awesome tool is just 18.56 with free shipping.

I use this grinder to make hot pepper powders.  Garlic and onion powder from a store?  Never I buy dried onions and dried minced garlic in large quantities, I then make up powders as I need them in small quantities.  Just smell fresh made garlic or onion powder and you will see why.

I whip up my own spice mixes like this one which is a great go to rub for almost any meat but especially chicken on the grill.

  • About a table spoon of each
    • Thyme
    • Dried garlic
    • Dried onion
    • Mustard Seed
    • Fennel Seed
    • Chili Powder
    • Dehydrated Celery (yea that is a secret)
    • Cumin
    • Tellicherry Black Pepper Corns (another secret)
    • Kosher or Sea Salt
  • Then about 3 table spoons of paprika
  • About 2 table spoons of parsley

This is all done by estimate by the way, not with spoons but you can do that if you want to.  This is a go to rub for poultry and fast grilled pork.  I just whipped up some for my buddy David to go on quail.  You can see that here.  The best thing with small pieces like quail, cut up chicken etc, is to put it in a large bowl and toss till well coated then grill.

Anyway it is unlimited what you can do, did you see the celery above, we always have it on hand, grinding it gives you the same type of punch as celery seed but it sure costs less and it is more versatile.  You guys that grow 15 different hot peppers can go mad scientist with pepper blends.

The Mr. Coffee Electric Coffee Grinder is also equipped with what they call a “Chamber Maid Cleaning System”.  This little device you spin with your finger and it helps get out all the stuff hiding on the edges.  For actual cleaning though, the bowl is water tight!  Fill it just below the max fill line with water (don’t get the base wet), put the lid on, pulse for a few moments, dump it out, set it upside down to dry, DONE!

Lastly I bought my first one of these before I even started TSP, it lasted until this year, when I stupidly tried to grind oyster shell with it!  So I got a new one, and I have found its limits, no rocks or shells, LOL.  Trust me no kitchen specifically no prepper kitchen should be without this tool.

This item has 1900 plus reviews and 76% are 4 or 5 star.  If you read the negative reviews they seem to be either coffee snobs that want a 18 dollar grinder to grind with the precision of a 500 dollar tool, or people to dim to get the cord out of the storage space on the bottom.  Friends you can’t fix stupid but you can fix up some amazing rubs and powders with this fool proof tool

Remember you can always see the TSP Amazon Item of the day by just going to TspAz.com and by shopping at TspAz.com anytime you shop on Amazon you help support TSP and the work we do here.

 

Frontier Organic Lemon Pepper – Amazon Item of the Day

Every day I bring you an item on Amazon that I personally use or has been purchased by many members of the audience and I have researched enough to recommend.

Today’s TSP Amazon Item of the day is Frontier Organic Lemon Pepper.  As always I recommend buying herbs/spices by the pound, buying by the ounce is a suckers game.  Also while I don’t eat 100% organic, I feel in this case you really should. 

Lemon pepper is made with lemon zest (the yellow part of the peel).  The citrus industry is one of the most heavy users of pesticides in the world.  When you think about these things being sprayed and the out side of the peel being removed and eaten, well, if you want a conventional product go for it.

Okay so as you might imagine this one is going to come with a recipe, but not just any recipe, the best lemon pepper herb chicken you will ever and I mean ever eat.  If you are making a lot just double the recipe, and it will work with any chicken but I formulated this for either boneless skinless thy or breast.  If you are doing breast cut it into thinner and smaller slices before starting.

Jack’s Lemon Pepper Herbed Chicken

  • 1/3rd cup of olive oil
  • Juice of 1/2 of a lemon and the zest
  • 2 oz of white wine
  • 2 tsp of rice wine vinegar
  • 2 tsp of lemon pepper
  • 1 tsp of sugar
  • 1 tsp of salt
  • 1/2 tsp onion powder
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp paprika
  • 1/2 tsp rosemary (if it is large needles crush it with your fingers a bit)
  • 1/2 tsp of basil
  • About 1 teaspoon of dry mustard – or as much as you need to emulsify.
  • Skinless boneless chicken (as much as you want to make, the above will do about 4 breast halves or about 8-10 thy cutlets.

Wait?  What the heck is emulsify?  Okay this marinade is made of oil, lemon juice, wine and rice vinegar.  Do you know what happens when they are put together, well in short they don’t get together.

The wine, vinegar and lemon juice all blend and the oil floats on top.  How can we get a good uniform marinade like that?  Well we can’t!  So we need an emulsifier, this lets us blend an oil and a water based liquid and keep them together.  For instance mayonnaise is an emulsification.  Made mostly of eggs and oil.  This emulsification is much easier though.  The dry mustard will allow us to mix oil and the other liquids and suspend them while keeping the mustard flavor very low compared to “prepared mustard”.

So take a ball jar and put all the ingredients except the chicken into it.  Put the lid on and shake the hell out of it.  Like for a good 45 seconds to a minute.  Stop shaking and let it sit for about a minute, take a look and see if the liquids stay mixed.  It is normal for the herbs to settle some but the liquids should not separate.  If all is well continue, if it is separating give it another bit of dry mustard and repeat.

Put all your chicken into a large zip lock bag, shake the marinade one more time to get the herbs all suspended again and dump it into the bag.  Push most of the air out of the bag, massage the bag and work the marinade all over everything.  Put in a bowl (in case it leaks, which would suck without the bowl) and put it in the fridge.  Leave it over night, a few times during this period massage up the bag and flip it over.

The next day remove the chicken and put it on a few paper towels for about 30 minutes at room temp.  This is important or you will be frying in a pool of oil and it will be hard to get  good brown.  Then fry in a pan of your choice or grill until done.  Don’t over cook it!  Cook to 145 if you use an instant read thermometer, but I can just tell when it is done by feel.

You can make this with any lemon pepper and it will be very good, you may find yourself addicted to it.  But if you want a superior organic product consider adding Frontier Organic Lemon Pepper to your pantry today.

Remember you can always find the TSP Amazon Item of the day by just going to TspAz.com and by shopping at TspAz.com anytime you shop on Amazon you help support TSP and the work we do here no matter what you buy.

 

Mae Ploy Curry Paste – Item of the Day

UPDATE – Since I first posted this review I have removed the small cans and sampler from it along with any recommendation that you buy the cans.  I specifically selected Mae Ploy curry paste because it was made with nothing but herbs and peppers, NO MSG!  Apparently the small cans have MSG. I can’t think of any reason a manufacturer would change the ingredients with package size but apparently they do.  Curry doesn’t require MSG, I recommend only the larger tubs now.  If you are okay with MSG fine, then you can buy the cans but I don’t formally recommend them at this time.

Every day I bring you an item on Amazon that I personally use or has been purchased by many members of the audience and I have researched enough to recommend.

Today’s TSP Amazon Item of the day is Mae Ploy Curry Paste and there are quite a few different options.  They include

I have had a lot of people tell me “I don’t like curry” and it usually means they have had at one time a heavy Indian curry and have decided that is curry.  I will say one thing most curries have in common is spice, so if you don’t like spice you may not find one you like or may have to use less than most people would in a recipe.

The thing is though, in Asia, the term “curry” is sorta kinda like saying BBQ Sauce in America.  Odds are you have had BBQ sauce you like, are okay with and frankly hate with bloody vengeance on who ever made it.  Why?  There are many versions of this, some are regional, some are family secrets, some are nothing but souped up Heinz ketchup, etc.

Curry is the same way, there are some common components and there are some regional adaptations but in say Thailand, every Thai mom thinks her curry is the best and likely has a secret thing or two she will never tell you about her version.  Translation is if you don’t like curry perhaps you have not tried enough variety yet.

I love cooking with curry paste, huge flavors and super easy and Mae Ploy Curry Paste is by far my absolute favorite brand.   Here is a dish I made last night.  As is typical there was no hard recipe it was just something I did on the fly.

Green Thai Curry Fish Soup.
(you can honestly use any fish or seafood you want in this)

What Went in it?

  • Pacific Rockfish (about 6 ounces)
  • Shrimp (4 split lengthwise)
  • Scallops (4 cut into fourths)
  • Peppers (sweet and jalapeño from my aquaponics system)
  • Sweet Potato Greens (from my aquaponics system)
  • Thai Water Spinach Stem and Leaf (from the timber frame pond system)
  • Swiss Chard Stem and Leave (from my aquaponics system)
  • Green Onion
  • Garlic
  • Coconut Milk
  • Lemon Grass
  • Garlic
  • Ginger
  • Green Curry Paste
  • Better Than Bouillon Fish Base
  • Saki.
  • Garnished with Basil, Watercress and more Green Onion (all from my aquaponics system)

Long list of ingredients but dead simple technique.  I cut the fish into bite size chucks and cut the scallops and shrimp as described.  Sliced up the peppers and set them aside with sliced water spinach stems.  Cut up all the greens and set them aside separately.  Also thin sliced up a full bunch of green onion and set it aside separately.

Added about 1/4 can of coconut milk to a pot and cooked it down by about 50% which is getting down to being more coconut oil than milk.  Added three heaping tablespoons of Green Curry Paste (next time it will be one) and cooked the curry paste down into the milk.  Then added a bunch of green onion, some ginger, garlic and lemon grass.  Cooked it down a bit more and added a bit of Saki.

Dumped in the rest of the coconut milk and a few cans of water bring up to hot and stir in a few teaspoons fish base to taste.  Add peppers and water spinach stems and simmer until tender.  Add all sea food and poach it till almost done, now throw in all the greens and more of the green onion.  Stir till greens wilt but are still bright green and kill heat.

Garnish each bowl with some thin sliced basil, green onion, red chili and water cress.  Man oh man this was good and it is just one way to use curry paste.  So consider trying one or several of these options and expanding your culinary horizon a bit. Again here are some of the options…

Remember you can always find the TSP Amazon Item of the day by just going to TspAz.com and by shopping at TspAz.com anytime you shop online you help support TSP and the work we do here no matter what you buy.

P.S. – Unopened this stuff stores really well and even when open it has a very long life in the fridge, so as  prepper, I’m just sayin…..

However a 14oz tub of this stuff is a LOT of curry paste, it will make a LOT of food.  Most times you only need a spoon or two to make a whole meal.  Oh and if I had to pick my personal favorite curry paste, it would be the green.

Spicy World Black Tellicherry Peppercorns Item of the Day

pepperEvery day I bring you an item on Amazon that I personally use or has been purchased by many members of the audience and I have researched enough to recommend.

Today’s TSP Amazon Item of the day is Spicy World Black Tellicherry Peppercorns and I recommend it based on a philosophy I have about all things.

“Whenever possible pay less and get better quality”

In this case you may wonder how that applies to something like pepper.  Well lets look at it this way, pepper is a go to spice, if you cook likely you use salt and pepper daily.  Any good cook knows that fresh ground pepper is the only way to go.  Why?  Well black pepper’s real magic is in the oils, if you buy preground most of that wonderful taste and aroma is gone by the time you use it.

If you have ever wondered why pepper smells so amazing when you grind it, it is those oils being released.  And aroma and taste are incredibly linked.  This is why food tastes so bland when you are sick and congested and can’t smell.

So what most people buy is a small jar of peppercorns at the market, usually malabar, which is fine but about as base model as you can get.  They will end up with 2-4 ounces of pepper and pay 4-5 bucks for it.  If we do the math you are now paying 20-40 dollars a pound for a low quality product.

Conversely this one pound bag of Tellicherry peppercorns is 13.49 on Amazon with free shipping on prime.  What is a Tellicherry Peppercorn?

Tellicherry peppercorns are like San Marzano tomatoes: they need to come from Tellicherry, a city on the Malabar coast of Kerala in India. They’re considered some of the finest peppercorns in the world, and one of the few “names” in pepper that people are familiar with.

As black pepper goes it is especially sweet, and has aromas from fruity to grassy to citrus and pine—but most of all, a certain bright freshness. The sweet, balanced flavor and complex aroma and really hard hitting spiciness makes it my go to pepper.

And that one pound bag will fill about 4 jelly canning jars, the 4th will be about 3/4th full.  I just pop them into my vaccucanner and seal them up, you can do the same with a Foodsaver and the jar attachment.  When I get down to 2 jars I order more, I never run out, hey we are preppers right.  Key is if you use pepper daily and most of us do, you don’t really need to vac seal them, just put them in a jar.  Don’t ask me to explain why, but the price per ounce goes up if you order a two pack, so if you want more than one, get the one pack and change the quantity in your cart.

This is a small savings I admit but if you do this with many of the spices, herbs and seasonings you use regularly it adds up over a year and you build up a storage, and you cook with top vs. mediocre quality.  As to quality this item has had 988 reviews on Amazon, it averages 5 stars and only 2% of reviewers rated it two stars or lower.  That is stellar performance, give them a try and you will see why.

Remember you can always see the TSP Amazon Item of the day by just going to TspAz.com and by shopping at TspAz.com anytime you shop on Amazon you help support TSP and the work we do here.

 

Thai Whole Dried Chiles by Asia-Trendy – Item of the Day

chilipeps

Every day I bring you an item on Amazon that I personally use or has been purchased by many members of the audience and I have researched enough to recommend.

Today’s TSP Amazon Item of the day one of my favorite cooking ingredients, Thai Whole Dried Chiles by Asia-Trendy.  First let me say I don’t even understand how they are able to provide these we free shipping at this price.  These things ship right from Thailand, it is on the fricken package when you get it.  This means you know you are getting the real thing.

Next they do bring some heat to the party but they are not a blow your brains out of your ears type of heat, just a nice warming heat that makes you know yea, that is a chile pepper in there!  Lost of people use them re-hydrated in stir fry and the like, that way if you actually eat them whole they pack a big punch but if you just use them to flavor the dish again we are back to a nice warming heat.

You can also take them for a spin in your coffee grinder to make a pretty impressive chili powder, or cut it with some dehydrated garlic for a bit more mellow heat and a nice addition in flavor from the garlic.

Yet my favorite use and the entire reason I tracked these down years ago is my famous chile, garlic, pepper oil.  My god this stuff makes the best chicken wings you will ever eat.  Here is what you need and how you make it.

Jack’s Famous Chile Garlic Pepper Oil

  • About 1-2 dozen dried chile peppers
  • About a half a hand full (about 3 TBS) black pepper corns (Tellicherry is best)
  • One whole garlic bulb or about 10 cloves
  • 2 cups of peanut oil

Crumble the peppers into a sauce pan, add in the black pepper corns, peal the garlic cloves and throw them in whole.  Add the 2 cups of oil and put on the stove, heat over low heat stirring often until you see the first signs of the peppers and garlic starting to fry.  DO NOT FRY THEM, what I mean is when  you see the first signs of bubbles forming, kill the heat.  It is best to use a thermometer and heat to at least 275 degrees. 

Set a towel on the counter and put the pot on it, cover it with a lid.  Fold the towel around the pot to hold the heat in, let it sit for at least 2 hours until oil is cool.  Now put everything into a blender, VitaMix, Nutri Ninja, what ever you have.  Blend the crap out of it until everything is pulverized.

Now strain into a ball jar, it should make right about one pint of oil.  This is great oil for cooking anything you want garlic and heat added to and again the heat really is not that intense, it is mostly incredible flavor.  Trust me you can’t buy anything like this, most chile oil in stores and restaurants is crap, you have to make it yourself if you want something this good and fresh.

My favorite use is on chicken wings.  Put your wings in a bowl and add enough to coat them all, toss them well to evenly coat.  You can roast or gill them strait away or add on a dry rub of your choice, if you want my dry rub for this tune in to today’s episode of TSP which will be Episode 1908.

Remember you can always find the TSP Amazon Item of the day by just going to TspAz.com and by shopping at TspAz.com anytime you shop on Amazon you help support TSP and the work we do here no matter what you buy.

P.S. – This stuff is one of those things that makes a great gift for people who like to cook.  Put it in a nice bottle or jar, with nice label or what have you.

P.P.S. For best results while it can be left out for a time, store it in the fridge.  There is no real risk of botulism if not refrigerated because even though we use moist garlic, by heating to 275 degrees we are 25 degrees above the temps needed to kill all botulism spores. Additionally almost anything you cook with it will have a surface temp above 250.  But it will simply keep fresh longer in the fridge, so you know what to do!

Sadaf Sumac – Item of the Day

Every day I bring you an item on Amazon that I personally use or has been purchased by many members of the audience and I have researched enough to recommend.

Today’s TSP Amazon Item of the day is Sadaf Sumac.  Note that this is middle eastern sumac not our native variety here in North America.  While there are some similar characteristics sumac from the Mediterranean and Arabic parts of the world is a different species with a long history of culinary use.

Dorothy and I really got hooked on this stuff when we found a recipe for “carrot fries” which are really just roasted carrots with this stuff on them, the recipe is really simple.  Cut carrots into sticks, coat with peanut oil, sprinkle Sumac, Salt and Pepper on them, roast at 425 until done, (20-30 minutes depending on your oven).  We use the “convection roast” setting on our oven when we make these and they come out great.

Yesterday I made up some Lamb Heart, Lamb Sausage and Oyster Mushroom stew.  I posted that on facebook and you can see it here.  I used Sadaf Sumac in the homemade lamb sausage that went in that stew, I have to tell you it was pretty fantastic.

This stuff is great on fish and chicken as you might imagine as it has a tart lemon like flavor much like its US cousins we all know and love.  On that note, the reason for this is it is high in ascorbic acid (AKA vitamin C).

Hence it is natural anti oxidant and has quite a bit of good press around health benefits.  There is a pretty good write up about that here.  This is about the best quality stuff I was able to find and at less than 10 bucks with free shipping on prime a 12 ounce container will last you a long time for not much money.  So consider adding Sadaf Sumac to your spice cabinet today and expand your culinary options.

Remember you can always find the TSP Amazon Item of the day by just going to TspAz.com and by shopping at TspAz.com anytime you shop on Amazon you help support TSP and the work we do here no matter what you buy.

P.S. – I guess I have to say it, no this isn’t poison sumac and no variety of sumac with red berries is poison sumac.  So no this stuff will not make you itch.  That said anyone with an allergy to cashews may have an allergy to sumac, so keep that in mind if it effects you or your family.  Bluntly always use all new food items with caution on the first use.

 

Hawaiian Red Alaea Sea Salt – Item of the Day

Every day I bring you an item on Amazon that I personally use or has been purchased by many members of the audience and I have researched enough to recommend.

Today’s TSP Amazon Item of the day is Hawaiian Red Alaea Sea Salt.  I first discovered this stuff at a local farm to fork restaurant here in Texas called Ellerbe Fine Foods.  In the summer season they use our duck eggs on burgers for their lunch menu.

Due to that Dorothy and I felt we should go have dinner there.  It was fantastic and they had a lot of little extras they brought out like breads and condiments, etc.  One was a small dish of deep red crystals.  The waitress suggested we actually sample some directly and simply called  it Hawaiian Red Salt.

I am a guy that likes his salt but seldom do I eat salt like tiny rock candy but hey you got to try things or you never learn anything.  It was fantastic!  Salty of course but mineraly, and a kind of character I can’t really explain, but I just really liked it.  It was like no other salt I have ever tasted.

So I did some research on it later that night.  It turns out that “Alaea Salt” is called that because it is mixed with red alae volcanic clay which gives the salt its color and some of its unique flavor along with a host of minerals.

The salt itself is sea salt made in the traditional Hawaiian manner, in holding tanks by hand.  So you are getting the minerals from both the salt and the clay in this stuff along great flavor, less sodium per ounce and a cool look all at the same time.

This stuff is fantastic for rubs, barbecues, on the rim of a margarita glass or anywhere you would use salt.  About the only place I would not want to use it would be in lacto-fermentation, I am just not sure how the clay once dissolved would effect the ferment.

On a final note, this product comes in both a coarse and a fine grain.  I use course because it is easier to handle by the pinch which is how I generally use salt when cooking.  But the fine grain would be what you’d want in a salt shaker.  Either way give Hawaiian Red Alaea Sea Salt a try, it will be something really cool to share with friends next time you have them over for dinner.

Remember you can always find the TSP Amazon Item of the day by just going to TspAz.com and by shopping at TspAz.com anytime you shop on Amazon you help support TSP and the work we do here no matter what you buy.

P.S. – Two important notes.  First all salt tends to cake in salt shakers at times, but natural salts do so more often, a few gains of rice in a salt shaker prevents that, learned that from my Grandma.

Next the brand above is what I buy but many people offer it and most of it is fine.  That said there should be only two ingredients listed, (Hawaiian Sea Salt and Red Alae Clay) if you see anything else it ain’t the real deal.


Hoosier Hill Farms Gourmet Paprika – Item of the Day

paprikaEvery day I bring you an item on Amazon that I personally use or has been purchased by many members of the audience and I have researched enough to recommend.

Today’s TSP Amazon Item of the day is Hoosier Hill Farms Gourmet Paprika.  Eventually I will be posting all my favorite spices, seasoning and herbs.  Why?  First they are consumables, meaning you use them over and over and in this case often.  Two they are expensive in small quantities, the way most people buy them.  Three, they are incredibly easy to store in bulk.

In this case much like my favorite peppercorns, when you buy in bulk you get top quality and pay a lot less.  Try this next time you are at a grocery, find a good quality paprika in a 2-4 ounce bottle and work out the price per pound.

So how do I store bulk herbs, usually I put them in half pint jars then put them in my Vaccucanner.  I keep a jar in the cabinet and when it is empty I just refill it and order new stuff when I am down to say two jars left.  In this case though, I just put the big bottle up in the less accessed part of my kitchen pantry and keep a jar in my spice cabinet.

Why, first it stores for a long time with no real effort and no loss in quality.  Easily over a year.  Leading to the second reason, we use this stuff in almost every spice we mix up using our coffee grinder method, we use it as garnish, we use a LOT of it, hence a pound will never make it a year here.  So no need for longer term measures.

I find it interesting that many preppers have tons of food stored and often go to heroic measures to make it storable.  Yet herbs and spices can pretty much just be put in something airtight and store for years and yet they don’t buy in bulk or keep any storage of them.  I always say eat what you store and store what  you eat, well herbs and spices fit that perfectly.

And the best part, this is great paprika, it has 144 reviews at the time of this posting, and is 4.5 stars over all.  And yet it is only 12.99 on Amazon Prime.    I highly suggest every prepper build up a good spice and seasoning storage rotation.  I have worked out that buying high quality in bulk vs. high or even low quality in small amounts saves us about 10 dollars on average per pound in most spices and herbs, etc.  With even 10 herbs or spices you use a lot and go though on an annual basis that is 100 dollars back in your pocket.

So give Hoosier Hill Farms Gourmet Paprika a try next time you place an order on Amazon and really consider getting my highly recommend Tillicherry Black Pepper Corns too.

Remember you can always find the TSP Amazon Item of the day by just going to TspAz.com and by shopping at TspAz.com anytime you shop on Amazon you help support TSP and the work we do here no matter what you buy.

 

 

 

Fletchers’ Federal Pepper Mill – Item of the Day

millEvery day I bring you an item on Amazon that I personally use or has been purchased by many members of the audience and I have researched enough to recommend.

Today’s TSP Amazon Item of the day is Fletchers’ Federal Pepper Mill. Now I know there are some that might ask why in the world anyone would pay about 50 dollars for a pepper mill?  The answer is because 9 years ago at a store, I found this mill, there was a promotional tag on it that said, “the last pepper mill you will ever buy”.

I snorted with condescension, but I also didn’t put it down.  Just that day I had thrown away yet another piece of junk pepper mill that crapped out.  My philosophy is always get the best value to performance ratio you can.  Another way of saying this is “always be frugal never be cheap”.

Frugal looks at total cost, cheap looks at cost today only.  Throwing out 5 or more 15 – 20 dollar pepper grinders over 5 years, costs 75-100 dollars and you get shitty performance during those years.

With skepticism I took the mill to the counter, mumbling under my breath “for this price it had better be” once again reading the propaganda saying, “the last pepper mill you will ever buy”.  Did it live up to the hype.

Well “last ever” is a bold claim!  I can’t say yet if that is true, even making allowances for buying a second one, or one as a gift.  Will this thing ever die?  I don’t know, I do know I have had it for 9 years, a year longer than I have been doing TSP.  With that in mind, 15 minutes before sitting down to type this I made to wonderful over easy pastured duck eggs, reached over to the side of the stove, grabbed this very mill, and it worked as good as the day I bought it.

The one bit of maintenance I do is every time I empty it, before refilling it I take the top off, turn it upside down, depress the bottom a few times and clean out the dust, then refill and rock on.  Is there anything better than the Fletchers’ Federal Pepper Mill I don’t really know, but if it costs more, I would not see the need to pay more.

A final note, when you cook with pepper or use it on food, please use it fresh ground.  Pepper has a lot of oils in it, that is where all the aroma and flavor come from.  This is why preground smells like, well nothing and fresh cracked smells, amazing.

As to the best deal on premium quality pepper corns, check out my write up on Tellicherry Peppercorns, or just get them at amazon, they are, Spicy World Tellicherry Peppercorns.  In any event no matter what pepper you prefer you should pick up the Fletchers’ Federal Pepper Mill to grind it in.  If not now, perhaps the next time you bang a cheap mill on the counter, curse under your breath and hold it up and look at the underside as though as it is an old Chevy in need of suspension work.

Remember you can always find the TSP Amazon Item of the day by just going to TspAz.com and by shopping at TspAz.com anytime you shop on Amazon you help support TSP and the work we do here no matter what you buy.

PS – I have linked to the “Walnut” finished model.  Please note there are other finishes, some painted, some of smaller size.  The internals of all the PEPPER MILLS are the same, and there is some pricing variation.  For instance if you want one painted a sort of cinnamon color, you can get it for half the price.   This makes sense as hand finishing wood is more labor intensive than a simple lacquered paint finish.

And that is great, do use some care in your selection as some of the models you can select on the page are actually salt mills, like this one.  I am sure they work just fine, but the grinders are different as they are designed for a different purpose.