Being an avid collector of recipes means coming up against ingredients that are not always readily available in my area. The easiest solution is just to research the item and see if I can either reproduce or substitute; this often gives me an entirely new recipe to add to my collection. One such item that recently became a must to try for me was ‘Old Bay Seasoning’.
Straight from Wikipedia – Old Bay Seasoning is a blend of herbs and spices that is marketed in the United States by McCormick & Company, and produced in Maryland. It is produced in the Chesapeake Bay area where it was developed by German immigrant Gustav Brunn in 1939 and where the seasoning is very popular to this day. (Learn more here)
It is apparently a popular spice in its region to use with anything and everything but most used with seafood and chicken.
Anyway, as I have had a few recipes sitting on the back burner because of a lack of ‘Old Bay’ I decided to do something about it. Seasonings are one thing that you can reproduce with a fair amount of accuracy, just so long as you can get a good recipe and the right ingredients. What follows is a recipe garnered from several internet pages and melded together to suit what I had available (luckily I have a ridiculous collection of herbs and spices)
Old Bay Mix
1 tablespoon ground dried bay leaves
2 teaspoons celery salt
1-1/2 teaspoons dry mustard
1-1/2 teaspoons ground black pepper
1 teaspoon sweet or smoked paprika
1 teaspoon ground celery seeds
1/2 teaspoon ground white pepper
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
1/8 teaspoon ground mace
1/8 teaspoon ground cardamom
1/8 teaspoon ground allspice
Combine all ingredients and mix thoroughly.
Store in an airtight container and store in a cool place.
Use with seafood or chicken.