Have Spice Kit, Will Travel

by Britta on 31 October 2010

in The Traveler's Cookbook

Travel Spice Kit

Travel Spice Kit

Cooking, I’ve discovered, is nearly impossible without some sort of oil or sauce, and a few spices. Ok, scratch that. It is possible, but it’s difficult, and dishes made without one or another of these things are often flavorless and uninteresting. A pinch of this and a dash of that, on the other hand, go a long way toward giving an otherwise bland dish flavor and balance, and can also help ingredients to cook through evenly and completely.

So, in order to facilitate that while you’re on the road, I’ve come up with a spice and oil kit that can travel with you wherever you go. It takes up less room than your toiletries kit and weighs only a few ounces. I have yet to come up with an official name for it, but I created one that fits into a sandwich-sized zip lock bag using those little empty bottles I found at REI. I bought some empty toiletries bottles I found in the travel sample section at Target, but they didn’t work as well, in my opinion. For one thing, they were made of colored plastic, so it was more difficult to tell what was in each bottle when they weren’t labeled, and the pink and green plastic definitely made the olive oil and red wine vinegar look much less appetizing. Plus, the ones from REI (or any outdoor gear store) come in sizes from .25 oz to 6 oz, which allows me a lot more options.

So, here’s what’s in my spice kit. All of these oils and spices will cover all of the recipes in the e-cookbook. They may need refills, depending on how many recipes you make, and how often you make them and, of course, how much you use at any given time.

In 2oz bottles:

  • Extra virgin olive oil
  • Red wine vinegar
  • Dijon mustard (in a squeezy 2oz bottle)

In .25oz containers:

  • Salt
  • Black pepper
  • Garlic powder
  • Basil
  • Oregano
  • Cumin
  • Chili powder
  • Cinnamon
  • Rosemary

Plus an extra, empty, 1 or 2oz. container for mixing salad dressings. Pretty simple. During my cooking marathon last week, I filled my bottles and containers with the requisite spices and oils and used only those to complete the recipes. I ran out of olive oil, vinegar and garlic by the end, but I managed to make it through most of the recipes by the time that happened. So, a refill might need to happen should you be on a long trip, or plan on making any of these recipes more than once.

Thoughts? Would you carry this while traveling?

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{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

Pat Perry November 3, 2010 at 6:46 pm

I like the list – going to pack up most of these tonight – as we are planning on cooking most of the meals in the condo in Maui – NEXT week! HEY! I’ll be sharing your blog with my traveling girlfriends who are joining us – one is a TRUE Foodie! thanks!

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