Monthly Archives: March 2014

Health benefits of Mustard

Mustard is commonly used in South Asian Cooking. There are three forms of mustard which are mustard sauce, mustard oil and mustard powder. Mustard sauce could be used to add spice to food whereas mustard oil could be used for many purposes including cooking. Mustard powder on the other hand is used as a garnish.
Other than for cooking and garnishing food, mustard has been used for medicinal purposes for hundreds of years. Below are some of the health benefits of mustard.

MustardControlling Asthma
Mustard contains high concentrations of selenium and magnesium. When consumed regularly, selenium and magnesium exhibit properties that are known to control Asthma, cold and chest congestion.

Helps in weight loss
Not many people know that mustard could help in losing weight. How does it help? It contains B-complex vitamins like, folates, niacin, thiamine and riboflavin known to increase a person’s metabolism which in turn helps lose weight.

Slows aging
Mustard consists of high concentrations of carotenes, zeanthins, lutein, vitamin A, C and K which when put together make mustard a good source of anti oxidants. Anti oxidants are proven to slow and reverse the effects of aging.

Lowers bad cholesterol
Two well known elements known to lower cholesterol are niacin and vitamin B3. Mustard contains either niacin or vitamin B3. Niacin also protects the body from hypertension by regulating the flow of blood throughout the body.

Stimulates hair growth
For centuries men have been applying mustard oil to stimulate hair growth. This is because mustard contains ample amounts of vitamin A, which is excellent for hair growth. It also contains beta carotene which gets converted to vitamin A during mustard oil products. Other than vitamin A, mustard also contains calcium, magnesium, iron and fatty acids that also promote hair growth.

For all your spice needs please visit the Mc Currie website.



Beets are a fabulous root vegetable that consist of juice that has been used traditionally to heal people for centuries. In ancient times, Romans  used beet root as a special treatment for fevers and constipation.


Beet juice is rarely consumed by itself. It’s best to add other vegetables and fruits such as apples and carrots.

Betalin Beet root juice cbeet Juiceontains a coloured pigment known as betalain. Betalain is a powerful, antioxidant, fungicidal, anti inflammatory and detoxification substance. According to research done, betalain may contain anti cancer characteristics.

                     Health Benefits of Beet Juice

Reverses Chronic Diseases Beet juice consists of oxalic acid. This acid is known to be a good solvent of inorganic (bad) calcium. According to research, inorganic calcium is the main cause of chronic disease.

Skin Problems Drinking beet juice a on regular basis may relieve ones skin off acne and blemishes.

Prevents cancer Research has shown that beet juice fights cancer. The juice consists of an element known as betcyanin. Betacyanin is proven to prevent the formation of cancerous tumors and to detoxify the body from all harmful toxins.

Eye Health Raw beet greens contain the carotenoids lutein and zeaxanthin. These carotenoids are extremely beneficial for the eye, especially the retina. Beet juice aids the body to absorb the carotenoids easily in to the system.

Liver Health One of the biggest benefits of beet juice is it contains the substance betaine. Betaine is known to stimulate the functioning of the liver cells and protect the liver and bile ducts.

More Benefits of Beet Juice Beet juice has also been proven to heal gout, and organs such as the kidney and gall bladder. It improves stomach acid production, lowers serum cholesterol, lowers homocysteine and regulates the blood pressure by normalizing it.

For all your spice needs please visit the Mc Currie website.

Honey Baked Chicken

Honey baked chicken, is a food that is consumed during special occasions in Sri Lanka, mainly in the middle to upper class comhoney baked chickenmunities. Usually it is consumed with rice or bread, and occasionally as a party snack. Below is the recipe for honey baked chicken.


400 grams chicken pieces (jointed)
3 tablespoons soy sauce
1 tablespoon soya oil
1 teaspoon Mc Currie chilli powder
2 teaspoons Mc Currie curry powder
1 teaspoon Mc Currie ginger paste
1 teaspoon Mc Currie garlic paste
1 level teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon honey
1 tablespoon sherry
1 tablespoon butter
Select  chicken thighs or drumsticks with or without the skin. In a bowl mix the soya sauce, soya bean oil, chilli powder, curry powder, ginger paste, garlic paste, salt, sherry and honey. Pour the mixture on the chicken pieces mix  and place the chicken pieces in resealable plastic bags and leave to marinade for about 4-5 hours (Ideal time 12 hours). Neatly place the chicken on a baking tray and add the remaining mixture. Brush the pieces with butter, and in an oven bake for 45 min at 180 degrees. Turn pieces over and bake for 10 minutes until golden brown in color.

For all your spice needs visit the Mc Currie website.

New Orleans King Cake

The New Orleans style King Cake, is a cake that diverges from the traditional French King Cake that is filled with almond paste. This cake is made and consumed during the New Orleans carnival season known as mardi gras. The cake Cakeconsists of 3 differently colored sugars that carry a special meaning; purple for justice, green for faith, and yellow/gold for power.


½ cup warm water
2 packages active yeast (4 ½ teaspoons)
¾ + 1 teaspoon sugar
3 ½ – 4 ½ cups flour
1 ½ teaspoons ground Mc Currie nutmeg
½ teaspoon + 2 tablespoons Mc Currie cinnamon
1 teaspoon lemon zest
2 teaspoons salt
½ cup warm milk
2 eggs + 1 egg yolk
1 stick salted butter
1 egg beaten

Into a shallow bowl pour warm water and add 2 teaspoons of sugar and yeast. Let the mixture rest for 3 minutes, and mix. Set the bowl a side in a warm area to ferment for 10 minutes, during which time it will double in size.

Add the remaining 31/2 cups flour along with the remaining sugar, nutmeg, ½ teaspoon of cinnamon, salt and lemon zest. After add the yeast mixture and milk. Stir well and add 2 eggs and one egg yolk. Repeat stirring till mixture becomes smooth. Add butter and stir again. After dough forms, roll into a ball on a floured surface, and knead like break. Knead the dough on a floured surface and sprinkle enough flour to wipe out the sticky texture of the dough. Knead for 10 more minutes until the texture becomes shiny and elastic.

Using soft butter, coat the inside of a bowl. Place the dough in a bowl and immediately cover with a  thick towel. Set it aside for 90 minutes or until it becomes double its size. After doing so let it sits for another 20 min after punching down the dough.

Remove dough from bowl and stretch it into a rectangle shape. Then stuff the bottom half with the filling of your choice (My recommendation 2 green apples chopped and peeled combined with cinnamon and sugar). Fold the rectangle in half and pinch the edges shut. Using the remaining cinnamon cover the bottom and pinch it shut. Then place the rectangle on a greased baking sheet, place in an oven and bake at 375 F for 25-35 minutes. Mix 4 oz cream cheese, 3 cups powdered sugar, 2 tsp vanilla essence and 3 tablespoons milk together. Divide this mixture into three parts and colour the three parts with purple, yellow and green colouring. Thereafter ice the cake with this mixture in a pattern pleasing to the eye.

For all your spice needs visit the Mc Currie website.


Health Benefits of Pepper

Black pepper comes from the black pepper plant from the Pepiracae family. It originated from the Indian state of Kerala and has been used as both a spice and a medicine for thousands of years.  According to the University of Wisconsin black pepper has been used in every culture and peppercorns were once used as a form of currency on the Malabar Coast.

 black pepper

Health Benefits of Pepper

A Good Source Of Manganese

Manganese is a compound that helps the human body activate enzymes that are necessary for Metabolism such as proteins and fats. It is also essential in the strengthening and development of bones and for the formation of collagen essential for healing of wounds.

Weight Loss

According to a study in, Physiology and Behavior, black pepper along with many other spices act as a thermogenic. This means it aids in increasing your bodies metabolic rate. Another study published in 2012, found that peperine present in black pepper suppresses the genes required for the formation of new fat cell growth, thereby fighting the formation of fat cells.

A Healthy Heart

Peperine present in pepper helps regulate blood pressure and reduce blood cell inflammation which contributes to many cardiovascular diseases. One of the major causes of heart attacks is high sodium content in food. Black pepper is an ingredient that is low in sodium content. A teaspoon of pepper corns contains, 1 milligram of sodium, which is less than one percent of a person daily required intake of salt. Therefore, using black pepper instead of salt to season your food would reduce the risk of a heart attack.


Black pepper increases digestion by stimulating the taste buds in the mouth. The ingredient stimulates them in such away that an alert is sent to the stomach to increase the production of hydrochloric acid. Hydrochloric acid is vital for the digestion of all foods.


People that suffer from anorexia have a lack of appetite. Therefore, black pepper can help regain their appetite by stimulating their taste buds.


Black pepper in tea is a simple home remedy for relieving chest congestion. This is because black pepper loosend the mucous membrane allowing a person to clear his or her throat.

For all your spice needs please visit the Mc Currie website.

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