If you are a big foodie and love the exotic flavours of foods from the different regions around the world then read on as you will love our review of The Spice Pioneer
‘s spice subscription box. In this review, we are sharing the New Orleans, Louisiana themed box which includes the spices to make Prawn or Chicken Creole, Spicy Cajun Corn, Coleslaw and for dessert a yummy Bananas Foster
. The spice box came beautifully in a brown box, consisting of a recipe card, an intro postcard about the location and the spices beautifully packaged in little-labelled packages. This is such a fantastic way to liven up your boring dinner meals and to taste exotic meals without leaving your home. Cooking with the spice box is also a great way to entertain guests if you are having a dinner party and want to showcase your culinary talent. We were sent the New Orleans themed subscription box, but they also have other themed boxes such as spice box from Uruguay, Thailand, Turkey, Istanbul, Spain, Jamaica, Lebanon, Kashmir, Morocco, South Africa and more. So read on to see what we think of the New Orleans themed spice box.
I really looked forward to reviewing this Louisianna Spice box. I love creole food and have already had the opportunity of making gumbo in a previous review, which you may also like to read here
. The spice box came with an A5 sized recipe card as well as a little postcard with some history regarding the foods from Louisiana. The recipe card has a complete list of ingredients and step by step guide on how to cook each section of your meal. On the back of the card, there was also a handy shopping list which lists down everything you will need to buy or find in your store cupboard to make this dish. I started by marinating the chicken and prawns (I decided to use both as my husband prefers chicken but doesn’t mind picking out the prawns) which was straightforward to do and this meant that I could get on with the next step on the recipe card. Although everything was listed step by step guide, I still found it a little difficult to follow due to it jumping from one item to another – as in you start with steps one to six being for the main part of the meal to step seven and eight being for the sides and then back to the main for step nine. But my advice is to take your time as the outcome of the whole meal, in the end, was really great.
All I did was add the spices to my basic items – such as the chicken/prawns and the tinned tomatoes, which are otherwise bland on their own, and voila, I had a really fabulous and flavoursome meal. I also swapped some of the corn for sugar snap peas as again my husband (not the kids!!) doesn’t like corn! Which also worked a treat. And the dessert, well, that was really great. It has to be cooked and eaten straight away, otherwise, the bananas would go brown and mushy. Remember to not miss out the alcohol as it is an essential part to the dessert and it needs to be cooked out, as it really adds to the whole flavour.
What I thought :
I was so impressed with the outcome that I went instantly to The Spice Pioneer website which seems to work on a subscription basis whereby you get one spice box every month, that will cook up a meal to serve four people. I noticed that a 3 months subscription costs £27, so it costs about £9 per month for your spice box (it contains the exact amount of spices you need per meal, therefore, no leftovers in order to create it again). I have to say, I am not sure that this is value for money. Yes you get a great guide on how to make the meal and a lovely recipe card, but I know that my spices last me a good few meals when I purchase one pack and the six little pots could be purchased from your local supermarket at a fraction of £9 (unless you buy particularly expensive spices). Equally, your outlay doesn’t stop there, you are also meant to purchase all of your other ingredients which worked out at a further 22 items I needed to get or find – in my case it was fine as I had most of it in the house already, but I can imagine for some people this could be quite daunting. That being said, if you love food but have no clue about cooking or recipes and want to travel to another country without even leaving your home, this spice box will do the trick for you! It is also a great gift to give a foodie friend or family who would appreciate a culinary adventure.
About the origins of the New Orleans Spice Box
The owners of Spice Box decided to head to New Orleans to experience its culture, meet its amazing people and enjoy its stunning scenery by cruising on the Mississippi River on a steamboat. They had great views of the city whilst listening to the music played from the ship’s calliope while sets of whistles blown by the steam! Next, they ended up on Frenchmen Street that night with jazz music playing all around them. As they sat outside a blues bar, watching the world go by, and enjoying a beef Po-Boy (the best sandwich ever) and drinking cold beer! They noted that everyone was so friendly in this city stopped to chat. After a couple of hours and more beers, they met a new friend, Charles Jnr. Next thing they’re invited to dinner at his home the following day. Unbelievable! Well, his wife Eunice really is a great cook. She showed them how to make Holy Trinity, the Louisiana mix of onions, celery & green peppers. It’s the foundation of most local dishes including the steaming plate of delicious Shrimp Creole that she served them. Her banana dessert was incredible too, as was the coffee! Eunice gave them her recipes, so here they are for you to enjoy. Straight from New Orleans to your kitchen.
Points to note
- The Spice Box is comes in a small box hence the postman can drop it off via your postbox
- Spices are measured for 4 people
- The fresh produce is not included in the kit just spice mix/blends
- There is a shopping list stated on the back of the recipe card which should make purchasing the ingredients easy
- A list of what is in the pot (ie ingredients/contents) is clearly stated on the card
How does it work?
You can either buy the box as a gift for yourself or purchase this for a friend. It is subscription box based, so the minimum you can purchase it for is 3 months which costs £27, 6 months’ subscription costs £52.50 or a year’s subscription costs £99. You can order your box here
About The Spice Pioneers
The Spice Pioneer is powered by Seasoned Pioneers, who are famous for dry roasting world-class spices, sourced from only trusted suppliers around the world. They source the best herbs and spices from reliable and trusted suppliers. Based in the North West of England, (United Kingdom) Seasoned Pioneers brings you exotic ingredients from around the world. In creating a spice subscription club for like-minded people seeking fresh culinary experiences from the four corners of the earth, Seasoned Pioneers offers a guiding hand to nudge you in the right direction. By sharing The Spice Pioneer’s experience, Seasoned Pioneers is giving you the opportunity to expand your culinary repertoire. Discover the smells and tastes of worldwide cuisine and ‘go that extra mile’ enhancing the mood and atmosphere with postcards and music from far-flung places. They only use the finest ingredients and have built long-term relationships with their suppliers across the globe. Seasoned Pioneers is famously known for dry-roasting & blending an entire range of spice mixes in-house using only traditional production methods and strictly original recipes (in no way ‘westernised’ or ‘anglicised’). Their methods include dry-roasting the whole spices in small batches (critical for genuine full-flavoured spice mixes) and fully developing and infusing together the flavour of each and every spice – enabling you to capture the very essence of world cuisine in your home.
Review by : Lex Ward
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If you’d like to read more about New Orleans, visit The Geordie Grandma’s post here
*We were sent the spices in return for a feature