While spices like black pepper, cloves, nutmeg and cinnamon were already beloved in the Netherlands during the Middle Ages
, they were extremely expensive and remained so until the Dutch East India company (VOC) started bringing back shiploads of exotic spices from faraway places like India, Sumatra, Borneo and Java in the 17th century, placing these aromatics within the reach of ordinary Dutch people.
Our flavored salt rub was inspired by the VOC's biggest spice imports of black pepper, cloves, nutmeg and cinnamon. It works really well as a dry marinade on meats such as duck, venison and lamb. Simply rub into the meat before cooking.
We usually make this in small batches, because even though the flavors will keep well for many months when stored in an air-tight container, we like our spices as fresh as possible.
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 2 minutes
Total Time: 7 minutes
Yield: Makes about 1/4 cup.
- 1 tsp black peppercorns
- 3 cardamom pods
- 2 star anise pods
- 2 cloves
- 1 cinnamon stick
- 1/2 tsp freshly grated nutmeg
- 3 tbsp coarse sea salt
Toast the spices in a hot, dry frying pan until they release their heady scent. Allow to cool for a few minutes. Place in a food processor and blitz until fine. Sieve twice and add back to the food processor along with the grated nutmeg and salt. Blend until the salt becomes a little finer and is well mixed with the flavorings. Spoon the spice rub into a small air-tight container. The rub will last for several months.