Nutmeg

In 1609, Nathaniel Courthope was sent by the English East India Company to Indonesia to help secure their share of the lucrative spice trade. In particular, to wrest control of the nutmeg trees that grew in the Banda Islands from the Dutch East India Company (V.O.C.). This aromatic spice was so valuable, it eventually won…

Turmeric

Marco Polo, on his epic travels to China and beyond, may have ‘discovered’ the vibrant, yellow-orange spice turmeric, but people had been using it in cooking, dyeing and medicine for a fairly long time before he showed up. WHERE IS TURMERIC FROM? The turmeric spice we know comes from the rhizomes, or underground stems, of…

CHILLI

Christopher Columbus set out to India in 1492 to acquire, among other things, a reliable supply of black pepper for his Spanish paymasters. Along with mistaking America for India, Christopher Columbus mistook chilli peppers for black peppers, which are not related, and carried them back to Spain. Biting into one of them may have made the difference…