Spices are the key to making healthy food delicious and flavorful, but they can also get very expensive. When we moved from New York to LA , I packed all my spices very carefully, knowing that if they got ruined, it would be at least $75-$100 to replace them.
I do buy spices at a discount where it makes sense. Discount stores like Marshall’s are hidden troves for gourmet spices and I generally buy the basics at the 99 cent store or I choose the generic brand at the supermarket.
Until recently my generic brand spices included garlic powder, onion powder, cinnamon, and several others. That is, until last month when I ran out of cinnamon. No surprise there, we go through tons of cinnamon in our house. I use it daily on my oatmeal, in smoothies, and on desserts. I love that it’s fragrant, naturally sweet, and versatile – and not to mention it may have some health benefits as well.
My supermarket was out of the generic brand, so because I was in a pinch I bought the brand name “Saigon cinnamon” (whose cost still makes me uncomfortable).
It was life changing. In a food kind of way.
We finished the bottle of Saigon cinnamon as we had finished so many cinnamon’s before it and returned to our generic brand. And the difference was more than noticeable - even Steve said “can cinnamon go bad?” after going back to the old brand. The Saigon cinnamon was sweeter, more fragrant, spicier, and just all around more delicious than any cinnamon I ever had.
So now I am obsessed. I look forward to my morning oatmeal more than ever before. I find that if I buy it in bulk , it’s not all that much more expensive than the generic guy. And a little bit goes a long way.