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Durkee Herbes De Provence
Durkee Herbes De Provence

ANKENY, IOWA – Traveling the world to source the finest ingredients for foodservice seasonings, Durkee® is proud to bring you Durkee Herbs De Provence. Durkee Herbes De Provence is a versatile assortment of herbs that are extremely popular in Southern France and the nearby Mediterranean region. The leafy mixture of basil, thyme, fennel and lavender flowers delivers superb gourmet flavor (and intriguing visual appeal) to fish, lamb, veal, chicken, roasts and chops ­ for less than a penny per serving. Durkee Herbs De Provence can inspire marinades, rubs and sauces, or simply be sprinkled onto a wide variety of upscale dishes. For more Mediterranean-style gourmet recipes, as well as other menu ideas and product detail, visit our information-packed website at

Durkee is a registered trademark of ACH Foods, Memphis, TN

Cumin Seasoned Pork Chops
Cumin Seasoned Pork Chops

CUMIN Field Report – SPRING 2007

McCormick’s chief spice buyer, Al Goetze, travels to exotic ports-of-call, trekking across varied terrain in search of the finest herbs and spices. In this journal entry, Al explains the versatility, history and cultivation of cumin, and invites us inside his recent trip to India, the largest grower and consumer of this incomparable spice.

What is it about cumin that makes this spice so unique? Its very distinctive flavor is described as slightly bitter and warm, with strong, earthy notes. A quick whiff of cumin and you instantly know its identity. But, did you know that cumin is among the top 10 selling spices in the U.S? That’s not so surprising if you think about how important cumin is to some of our favorite flavors, like taco seasoning, chili powder and other Mexican and Southwest-inspired dishes. Cumin is also an essential ingredient in virtually every global cuisine, particularly the more trendy foods of North Africa, India and the Middle East.

Cumin seed has an extensive history and the foods that it is used to flavor today actually traces its fascinating past. Earliest records of cumin date back more than 4,000 years to its farming in the Nile River Valley and cultivation by the Egyptians. From there the seeds were bartered through overland camel trading routes crossing Northern Africa to the west and Asia to the east. As trade expanded, cumin was carried north into Europe via Morocco and Venice. Cumin reached the New World, with the arrival of the Spaniards in Mexico. Each stop along the way, the local population became intrigued with cumin’s flavor, and found ways to incorporate the spice into their dishes.

To get a firsthand view of this season’s cumin seed crop, I travel to northwest India to the states, Gujarat and Rajasthan. I meet up with my local colleague, Sibi, in Ahmadabad and drive over four hours to get to the growing region. This part of India is flat, with fields and grasses on both sides of the road as far as the eye can see. Cumin grows in the mild winter months, as the moisture and cool temperatures are ideal. The harvest takes place from March to May. It is critical that the weather becomes dry at harvest time. Hard rains can cause seeds to fall to the ground or turn black in color, resulting in a lower quality crop. This year, the crop is looking great — the farmers have planted a very large quantity and the weather has been ideal.

Cuminum cyminum is a delicate-looking annual, with slender, branched stems. It is a small, fast growing plant seldom reaching higher than three feet. Tiny white flowers will yield cumin seeds, which range in color from pale brown to khaki. Cumin seeds are similar in appearance to caraway seeds, averaging about ¼ inch in length. It grows in temperate climates and is harvested just four months after planting. It’s amazing that such an unassuming plant produces a seed so packed with flavor and aroma.

The farmers manually harvest the seeds by pulling the whole plant out of the ground and thrashing the seeds off of the plant onto a cover. Then, they are sun-dried and hand-sifted over a screen to separate out stems and twigs.

Most seeds are taken to a small town called Unjha which has a famous open air market, where merchants sell small lots of several hundred pounds of cumin seeds, one lot at a time. Even in the spring months here, the weather can get very warm, so the market closes for two hours mid-day. We were invited to eat at a local merchant’s house. The meal was comprised of many colorful dishes, both meat and vegetarian. My favorites were the curries that had an ample amount of cumin, fresh from the market! After our bountiful meal, we had a siesta to regain our strength for the afternoon at the market and the long drive back to Ahmadabad.

Back at home, I like to combine cumin with chili pepper, oregano and garlic for a flavorful spice rub — exceptional on grilled pork.

I look forward to sharing my next journey with you, and wish you a flavorful season!

McCormick’s New Seafood Pier
McCormick’s New Seafood Pier

HUNT VALLEY, Md. – (March 2007) – Over 60% of consumers are preparing seafood once a week or more. And, whether they’re trying to eat healthier meals or just enjoy the flavor of seafood, people crave variety, convenience and great taste. With numerous seafood choices and flavor options readily available, the possibilities are limitless – and sometimes overwhelming. That’s why McCormick®, the flavor expert, is charting a course to help retailers revitalize the seafood department. How? By simplifying the shopping experience, adding interest to the seafood section with more visual impact and appetite appeal, and introducing on-trend new products for baking, grilling and steaming. McCormick’s all-inclusive, value-added program is designed to drive sales and continue to provide the flavor and variety consumers trust.

Among the highlights of the seafood department revitalization are:

  1. New products on-trend with consumer preferences. McCormick adds three sensational seafood sauces; two convenient Seafood Steamer varieties; and one savory, tangy Seafood Rub to its offerings. OLD BAY® is introducing a 30% less sodium Seasoning, a coarse blend Rub and a Seafood Steamer that’s ideal for shrimp and salmon.
  2. Impactful new packaging that features color food photography to enhance appeal and usage; provides easy instructions, tips and recipes for preparing seafood; communicates superior quality; and reinforces brand identity. An eye-catching new wave on the McCormick packaging unifies the line and creates strong presence on shelf.

McCormick Charts A Course Exciting new merchandising tools, including McCormick Seafood Piers that can be strategically placed in front of the seafood counter to encourage impulse purchases, drive trial and facilitate easier shopping.

  1. Recipe cards offering easy meal solutions with enticing food photography, as well as seafood facts to help consumers become more savvy.
  2. Materials to educate seafood department employees about common consumer questions on seafood species and preparation.
  3. The power of the three-brands, McCormick, OLD BAY and Zatarain’s, offers seafood sauces, seasonings and rubs; breadings and batters; cocktail and tartar sauces – everything consumers could possibly want to flavor seafood – with the convenience of ordering through one sales force.

With an extensive network of researchers, trend experts, chefs, home economists, food technologists, and sensory analysts, McCormick & Company, Inc. keeps its finger on the pulse of flavor. McCormick was founded in 1889 in Baltimore, Maryland and today is the largest spice company in the world. McCormick sources only the finest ingredients from around the globe to bring the highest quality flavors to consumers.

McCormick is a registered trademark of McCormick & Company, Hunt Valley, MD 21031

McCormick Seafood Seasonings
McCormick Seafood Seasonings

HUNT VALLEY, Md. – (March 2007) – This spring, McCormick – America’s favorite spice maker – is making a splash at the seafood counter. The flavor expert is introducing three SEAFOOD SAUCES, two SEAFOOD STEAMERS and a SEAFOOD RUB to give people even more delicious options for preparing great tasting seafood at home.

  1. NEW SEAFOOD SAUCES – three trendy infusions offer a versatile way to add flavor to seafood while grilling, baking and broiling. Try: Mediterranean, a blend of sun-dried tomatoes, onion, bell pepper, basil, oregano, and rosemary; Santa Fe Style, a zesty combination of tomato, garlic, chili pepper, cumin, herbs, and lime juice; and Asian, featuring soy sauce, white wine, garlic, sesame, and ginger. Suggested retail price for all sauces is $3.23.
  2. NEW SEAFOOD STEAMERS – one pouch contains everything you need for perfectly seasoned, steamed fish and shrimp. Available in two popular varieties – Lemon Garlic and Garlic Butter, Seafood Steamers are an easy way to dress up weeknight meals. Simply place seafood, water and the seasoning in the steaming bag and microwave for six minutes. The specially designed steaming bag helps lock in freshness, moisture and flavor. Toss the empty bag and the mess. Suggested retail price is $2.89.
  3. NEW SEAFOOD RUB – a savory, tangy blend of herbs, lemon and garlic that makes it a cinch to create a flavorful crust that seals in the juices of grilled, broiled or baked fish and shrimp. Suggested retail price is $1.79.

For more information and recipes, visit or call 1-800-MEAL-TIP (1-800-632-5847).

McCormick is a registered trademark of McCormick & Co, Hunt Valley, MD 21031