The Spice Trade

Industry insider knowledge, and usage tips on spices and other ingredients

Category Archives: Recipes

Recipe: Lentil Soup with Allspice

Lentil Soup with Allspice

I was checking what’s on sale on Regency’s site, and the first item that was on the list was allspice. I use allspice for quite a few dishes from oven baked chicken drumsticks to tomato-based Indian curry. When I first heard of allspice, I thought it was a blend of spices. But actually, they are dried unripe berries! Once you smell its aroma, you know why they were given the name, allspice. This aromatic spice is very useful and I use this every time I make tofu burger. Today I like to share a recipe for tomato-based lentil soup using allspice. … keep reading

Recipe: Spicy Taco Rice

Spicy Taco Rice

I have been to Okinawa only once, and that was when I had just broken up with my first relationship (hahaha, I wanted to enjoy life even though I was still sad, so I chose to travel alone 😉 ) While I was there, I tried local cuisines such as Okinawa soba and goya chanpuru. I also tried yummy sweets, sata andagi. They were so good. But taco rice! I missed taco rice while I was there. So I cooked my own version when I came back. Different households have a different way of cooking taco rice. Many people use lettuce and … keep reading

Recipe: Guacamole


Whenever I go to a supermarket for grocery shopping in Hong Kong, I always see some people buying avocado. What I find it very interesting is the Chinese characters used for avocado, 鳄梨. It literally means “crocodile pear.” It seems they were named that way because the surface of avocado skin resembles that of crocodile’s 😀 It’s always interesting to learn something new. Anyway, I have always been a big fan of this crocodile pear, and I always make guacamole when I make tacos. The addition of lime juice and a bit of hot chili makes avocado dip tastes so good. … keep reading

Recipe: Chicken Quesadillas

Chicken Quesadilla

When I was still living in Yokohama, Japan, my colleagues and I would sometimes have supper together at T.G.I. Friday’s located just outside of Yokohama station. And one of my colleagues always ordered quesadillas. She loved it so much that she didn’t even glance at other dishes on the menu. In Hong Kong, I have a difficulty finding corn flour, but I’ve seen flour tortilla. With right ingredients, quesadillas is not hard to make at home Tips: (1) Some people add cherry tomatoes or fresh coriander to the chicken mixture. (2) This goes very well with guacamole. Enjoy your own arrangement! Recipe: Chicken … keep reading

Recipe: Star Anise Panna Cotta

Star Anise Panna Cotta

A few weeks ago, when I told my friend that I’d be writing recipe articles for Regency Spices, her immediate reaction was, “It must be difficult to come up with a recipe everyday using spices. I don’t even know how to use star anise!” Star anise. Yes, star anise, a lovely looking star shaped fruit, is not a common spice in everyday cooking. In Sichuan where my husband is originally from, star anise is used frequently including their famous Sichuan hot pot. But for now, for my friend and those who love sweets, I like to share one easy dessert recipe using … keep reading

Recipe: Hummus


If you make peanut butter at home, then making hummus (chickpea paste) should be a piece of cake for you 😉 I have tried other types of beans such as lentils, but I have always come back to chickpeas. Most often I use hummus in place of meat to add nutty and fatty flavor to go with a dish. Dishes I have tried hummus with include tacos, nachos, quesadilla, sandwich and what not. Of course it goes very well with fresh vegetable sticks. I often overeat celery with hummus because they are so good! This recipe uses a food processor, but it can be … keep reading

Recipe: Herb Tea Mixture (Six Blends)

Herb Tea Mixture

When I was writing this article, I remembered a dialogue from a TV show which I watched in Japan more than a decade ago. It went like:           Man A: “Chinese foods are so oily. How do they stay fit?”           Man B: “They drink tea with their meal to wash it away.” I don’t quite remember whether it was a health program or a TV commercial for oolong tea. Yet, I also find Chinese foods a lot oilier than Japanese dishes. But these oily Chinese cuisines taste so good. Whenever I … keep reading

Recipe: Mustard Shrimp

Mustard Shrimp

Because my husband loves shrimp, I’ve tested a variety of shrimp dishes in my kitchen, and this mustard shrimp is among my favorites. The combination of wholegrain mustard with garlic and cayenne pepper is mouthwatering. I personally like this one over the garlic shrimp I cook. I hope you will like it 😀 Tips: (1) Deveining process can be a bit messy for those trying it the first time. You can purchase peeled and deveined ones to save your trouble. (2) Coriander can substituted with parsley. Recipe: Mustard Shrimp Serving: 3 Ingredients 600g shrimps, peeled and deveined 4 tablespoon lemon juice 1 tsp of garlic granules … keep reading

Recipe: Creamy Thyme Cottage Cheese

Creamy Dill Cottage Cheese

About five years ago, I was working as an interpreter for a client based in Switzerland. When I met this client for the first time, this gentleman presented me with home-made Swiss cheese. He said they were made by his neighbor and showed me a picture of a cow which belonged to his neighbor. The cow looked sort of funny in the picture, but the cheese! The cheese was superb. In Hong Kong, cheese we see in a supermarket are usually imports. I do not recall seeing made in Hong Kong cheese in a nearby store. But I have seen milk which … keep reading

Recipe: Herby Pizza Crust

Herby Pizza Crust

This easy-to-make pizza crust is ideal for busy Hong Kong people or anyone who want to minimize the cooking time but still want to enjoy a nice hot home-made pizza with toppings you fancy. If you already have tomato sauce and mozzarella cheese, then you can make margherita pizza at home in 30 minutes. You can also make pesto pizza by using basil pesto instead of tomato sauce and top with cottage cheese or any cheese you like. (In my next article, I will share with you how to make tomato pizza sauce at home) Tips: This recipe skips the dough-rising … keep reading