From offal to nettles: chefs on the best underused ingredients to try at home

The Guardian - Nov 08, 10:00 GMT

Our shelves are often stacked with bottles and jars of things to which we rarely turn

Our shelves are often stacked with bottles and jars of things to which we rarely turn. But which spices, cuts, leaves and liquids have yet to shine on our kitchen counters?

A New Yorker profile of Yotam Ottolenghi in 2012 quoted a reader of his Guardian column, who said she had omitted an ingredient in a ceviche recipe. “I’m a bit of a Yotam fan,” she wrote, “but his mere mention fills my husband (who does most of the shopping) with dread. This week’s ‘dried fennel pollen’ might send him over the edge.”

While asking for a quarter of a teaspoon of any kind of pollen feels like culinary Spinal Tap, Ottolenghi’s lists of ingredients have changed the way that supermarkets stock their shelves. It would appear that the trickle-down effect in cuisine is as unmistakable as that seen in the fashion world from the supposedly cerulean blue jumper.

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