There are various different kinds of dried substances, which are primarily used for flavoring or coloring of the food, these are called spices. Seeds, root, fruits, bark and even vegetables are dried to serve the purpose of the spices, but they are different from the herbs, which also do the similar job of garnishing and flavoring. Spices are added to the food to give it a flavor and since, they have antimicrobial properties, they have a common use. Other than cooking, the spices are also used for various medicinal purposes, religious rituals, and for cosmetic and perfume production.
The first spice trade was done in around 2000 BCE. Various common culinary spices are ajwain, carom seeds, avocado leaf, Basil, Bay leaf, Black cardamom, black and brown mustard, blue fenugreek, celery, chilli pepper, cicely, cinnamon, clove, coriander seed, cumin, curry leaf, dill seed, fennel, ginger, garlic chives, jasmine flowers, kokam seed, lavender, mint, mustard, oregano, peppermint, turmeric, and many more. The spices are available as fresh, whole dried or pre-ground dried. Among all, the wholedried spices have the longest shelf life. The spices have strong flavor and this is why, they are used in smaller quantities. Also, many of them contains fats, proteins and carbohydrates to add a good nutritional value to the food.