We welcome all comments, questions, and suggestions you may have on our products. Please feel free to contact us via any of the avenues below:
If there’s a specific store you’re trying to contact, click here to view our store locations.
Web order questions: email@example.com
For general inquiries, warehouse or product questions, please call our Corporate Office at: (616) 848-7760.
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Spice & Tea Merchants Mailing Address:
P.O. Box 130
Saugatuck, MI 49453
Have you ever wanted to turn a grilled cheese sandwich into something unique and memorable? By combining cheese, chocolate, and fruit you can do just that!
This is the sort of treat that has many flavor combinations. Below are just some recommendations, so feel free to customize to suit your tastes.
A quality sandwich starts with quality bread, so use your favorite! We recommend a good multigrain baguette or sourdough.
For the cheese, we want something distinct that'll pair with dark chocolate, but won’t overpower the subtle fruit flavors. Brie or medium white cheddar is ideal, but a creamy blue, gruyere, or mild Swiss won’t disappoint.
This is where Spice & Tea Merchants really makes things interesting! We’re not just using any old chocolate, but unique dark chocolate with complex flavors. Click here and here for our chocolate bar / disc selection – you can’t go wrong with whatever you choose!
Raspberries seem to be the crowd favorite, but you can certainly use apricots, blackberries, blueberries, cherries and strawberries. Experiment with different chocolate and fruit combinations to see what excites you!
~Making the Sandwich~
Ingredients (for two sandwiches):
4 Bread Slices
4 Ounces Cheese
2 Ounces Dark Chocolate (broken into pieces)
1/2 Cup Fruit (lightly smashed)
2 TBSP Butter
1. Butter one side of all bread slices (the side you intend to grill).
2. Layer on cheese, smashed fruit, and chocolate pieces (all on unbuttered side). Top with another bread slice.
3. Heat a pan over medium heat and add sandwiches. Toast both sides until golden brown and the cheese and chocolate have melted (about 4 minutes each side).
Tip: Covering the pan during toasting will help melt the cheese and chocolate. Alternatively, if a cover isn’t available, reduce the heat to low and continue heating until the cheese and chocolate have melted.
In the mood for something decadent? Try buttering up one of our most popular black teas – Moonlight Earl Grey. By itself, this tea features bergamot citrus, vanilla, and cream. Blending it with a bit of butter and our Baker’s Blend creates a rich and creamy refreshment.
1. Soften the butter by letting it sit unrefrigerated for about 20 minutes.
2. Blend together the butter, Baker’s Blend, and Vanilla Bean Sugar.
3. Bring 16 oz of water to a boil, and then steep the tea for 4-5 minutes.
4. Add the butter mixture to the tea and stir until dissolved.
5. Serve and enjoy!
Share this rich treat with a friend…or keep it all for yourself – we won’t tell!
If you’re preparing this on a particularly cold winter night, feel free to add 2 ounces of dark rum to the mix.
A roasted turkey is the cornerstone of a traditional Thanksgiving dinner, but preparing a memorable one can be a daunting task. So Spice & Tea Merchants is here to simplify the process with a straightforward method for rubbing and roasting your turkey.
Begin by thinking about the flavor profile you’d like to give your turkey. Are you looking for a traditional herbal flavor or something unique? Also, be sure to get a sufficient quantity of spices. If your bird is in the 14-16 lb range, you’ll need two or more ounces of dried spices.
*Herb Poultry – A traditional herbal blend fantastic for roasting poultry.
*Herbs de Provence – This classic French blend is a house favorite! It boasts an herbal flavor with flowery lavender notes.
Tuscan – Our best seller! Reminiscent of Tuscan cuisine, this versatile blend can be used for nearly any meal.
Peppered Rosemary – An intense herbal blend for all the rosemary lovers out there.
*These blends are salt-free, so combine them with our French Grey Sea Salt for optimal flavor.
Berbere – Hailing from Ethiopia, this spicy (hot) mixture is primarily composed of chile powder and paprika. It’s great as a turkey rub, or as a seasoning for your leftovers in a turkey soup or stew.
Coffee BBQ – Coffee is a tenderizer, but it cooks out, leaving a sweet but complex BBQ flavor.
Raspberry Chipotle – Slightly smoky, a bit spicy, and has a sweet raspberry twist.
The above is by no means an exhaustive list – click here to view all our spice blends.
Rubs work best when they have time to sit. So the ideal rubbing time is 24 hours before roasting. Though, if your turkey is frozen, be sure to let it thaw out in the refrigerator – usually three or four days.
Start by mixing your chosen seasoning together with softened butter, olive oil, or a mixture of the two. Now apply the combination to the outside, working it in with your hands. Whenever possible, be sure to get the spices under the skin, and don’t forget to season the cavity as well. When finished, return the turkey to the refrigerator until it’s time to roast.
Prepare the turkey for the oven by allowing it to come up to room temperature (ensures even cooking). Then wrap the wings in foil and tuck them behind the neck. Also, tie the legs together so they’ll hold their shape.
Stuff the cavity with a variety of veggies, such as carrots, celery, and onions. These are not meant to be eaten, but will flavor the drippings and make stellar gravy! (Depending on your chosen spice blend, these veggies may or may not be appropriate.)
Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F.
Place the turkey into a roasting pan, and add enough liquid (water, wine or broth) to keep the drippings from burning. Then loosely cover the turkey with foil.
Roast for approximately one hour, remove the foil, and continue roasting for 2 to 2 1/2 hours – basting occasionally. You’ll know your turkey is done when the internal temperature reaches 160 degrees in the thickest part of the breast and 170 degrees in the thickest part of the thigh.
Remove the turkey from the oven, transfer it to a platter, tent with foil, and let it rest for about 20 minutes before carving. Reserve any pan drippings for gravy.
To make gravy, pour the drippings and browned bits from the roasting pan into a large glass measuring cup and spoon off the fat – reserve two tablespoons.
Add the reserved fat and 2 TBSP flour to a saucepan over medium heat, whisking constantly until golden.
Add the drippings and stock while bringing to a boil. Add the stock in small amounts, and whisk until it reaches the desired consistency. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
So, after reading through the guide above, hopefully the only hard decision you’ll have to make this Thanksgiving is which turkey rub to use!
With Fall being here, most families visit an apple orchard at least once to commemorate this beautiful season. Recently, one of our own visited an orchard and grabbed two types of apples: McIntosh and Crimson Crisp. Orchard grown apples always makes the best applesauce in our opinion. There certainly is something quite magical about picking out your own apples to use in your recipe verses buying some from a local grocery store.
What's great about this recipe is that you can customize is quite easily. We opted for no added sugar, but we suggest to those that like their applesauce a bit sweeter to include our Spice Sugar blend. You also have the option to peel or not peel the apples. This batch we opted out of peeling the apples creating a thicker applesauce.
Check out this easy recipe below with step-by-step instructions:
1. Slice the apples into pieces-we recommend using an actual apple slicer that slices it safely for you
2. Stick them into a Crockpot with 1/2 a cup of water and 1/2 tsp of ground Spice Merchant's Vietnamese cinnamon
3. Cook on high in a slow cooker for 4-5 hours, or low for 7-8 hours, occasionally stirring and mashing the apples as they cook
Ready to add some drama and beauty to your tableside food presentation and enhance the flavor of your dishes? Try using Himalayan Pink Salt Slabs which are harvested from the ancient sea salt deposits in the Salt Range of Pakistan. Crystallized for more than 500 million years and covered by volcanic lava which protected the salt from pollution and fully explaining why Himalayan Pink Salt is the purest. Both flavorful and beautiful, these Himalayan Salt Slabs are an exciting new way to cook and serve with salt!
These slabs are both dense and efficiently conduct heat which is why the slab retains the heat so well and seasons food evenly. Heat your slab, plate or brick to high temperatures and sear thinly sliced meats, vegetables, fish, seafood, eggs and other quick-cooking foods. You can also chill it for use in serving sushi, appetizers, cheese, fresh fruit, cold meats and desserts. Think of the endless possibilities!
Here are 20 benefits of Pink Himalayan Sea Salt (source:fitlife.tv)
1. Contains 80+ minerals and elements
2. Helps control water levels in the body
3. Helps balance electrolytes
4. Promotes stable PH levels
5. Boosts brain health
6. Helps regulate blood sugar
8. Boosts energy
9. Promotes increased absorption of nutrients
10. Aids vascular health
11. Supports respiratory function
12. Reduces risk of sinus problems
13. Reduces cramping
14. Promotes healthy bones
15. Promotes healthy sleep
16. Supports libido
17. Boosts circulation
18. Promotes kidney and gall bladder health
19. Increase hydration
20. Aids metabolism
SaltWorks, one of the largest distributors of salt blocks, suggests way for heating, cleaning and care as well as chilling.
Did you know that salt slabs can be used in the oven, on the grill or on a range making them convenient for nearly anyone
CLEANING & CARE:
When you’re adding marinades to whatever you’re cooking on the salt, it can create quite the mess to clean up, which is why it’s so important to scrape excess food off the slab immediately following use. Allowing it to cool will make it easier to scrub clean. Once cleaned, wipe it off with a damp cloth. Allow the slab to dry for a minimum of 24 hours before using it again. Keep in mind that salt is a natural anti-microbial so cleaning them with cleaning products or soaps may cause damage. You can store your salt slab in a dry place.
For those who intend to use the Himalayan Salt Slab for making or preparing dishes at room temperature, cooling or frozen make sure to place the slab in a refrigerator for at least an hour to lower the internal temperature slowly. If you’re preparing foods that require colder temperatures, you can place the slab into the freezer for two additional hours.
Try chilling or freezing for:
Note:Since Himalayan Pink Salt Slabs are natural and are a product from the salt range in Pakistan, it’s important to remember that not every slab has the same unique color and inclusions which leads to different temperature and pressure thresholds.
For recipes using your salt slab, visit: https://www.seasalt.com/recipes/main-dishes.html
Picture Source: www.SeaSalt.com
This creamy iced Matcha Green Tea Latte lightly sweetened with vanilla almond milk and a hint of vanilla extract makes this a healthier version of deliciousness.
There are so many reasons to incorporate this mega superfood into your daily health routine.
Here are TEN amazing benefits of MATCHA:
1. high in antioxidants
2. increases energy level
3. enhances mood
4. improves skin
5. boosts immune system
6. lowers cholesterol
7. stimulates metabolism
9. boosts memory and concentration
10. helps prevent cancer
This Matcha recipe is made with vanilla almond milk, raspberry match (we also carry regular Matcha and peach Matcha), a drizzle of honey and just a splash of vanilla extract. Choose from Tahitian, Madagascar and Mexican vanilla extract available for purchase in our store or online.
One thing we recommend is to make sure that you completely blend the Matcha to prevent clumps in your latte. You won't need a blender to mix the ingredients, but we do recommend picking up a Matcha whisk and bowl to make blending and mixing easier. We also sell these products for your convenience.
Matcha green tea is both refreshing and energizing. It acts as an anti-inflammatory, it's incredibly high in antioxidants, boosts metabolism and boosts memory concentration.
Start sipping on this mega superfood, super tasty iced Matcha green tea latte.
Note: Feel free to double or triple this recipe to store additional Matcha Green Tea in fridge for later enjoyment.
The burger is an iconic American food, and we Americans eat about 50 billion annually. That’s a lot of burgers! Though, is there a way to improve this classic, so we’re eating quality ones at home? Absolutely! Here are some tips for making a better burger.
The most critical element of any good burger is the beef patty. As such, the freshness and quality of the beef is paramount. If you have access to a quality butcher, ask if they’ll freshly grind the meat for you. Ground chuck is preferred, as it usually has a ratio of 80% meat to 20% fat – making for a juicy burger without being excessively fatty.
When forming the patty, the less you handle the meat, the tenderer it’ll be – overworking the meat just makes it tough. Another recommendation is to put an indentation in the center – roughly the size of your thumb. This causes the burger to stay flat while cooking, rather than forming a dome in the middle.
During cooking, don’t squish the patties, as this only drives out the juices. Use your spatula for flipping, not compressing. Speaking of flipping, feel free to flip as often as you’d like, the idea that you can “over-flip” a burger is just a myth.
Here’s a quick temperature guide for your burgers:
120F: Rare | 130F: Medium-Rare | 140F: Medium | 150F: Medium-Well | 160F: Well Done
If you’re using quality beef, then you should be using quality seasonings to bring your burger to its full potential! Be sure to season after making the patties, and only minutes before being placed on the grill. If you season too early the salt will break down proteins, which draws out moisture and creates an undesirable texture. Below are five seasonings Spice & Tea Merchants offers for your perfect burger!
Butcher’s Rub – A traditional blend with herbal and peppery flavors
Coffee BBQ – Coffee tenderizes meat but cooks out, leaving a sweet but complex BBQ flavor
Korean BBQ – A spicy teriyaki profile, with sesame notes
Raspberry Chipotle – Slightly smoky, a bit spicy, and has a sweet raspberry twist
Saugatuck Steak – Paprika based with a peppery profile and hint of Worcheshire
The above should get you started, but is by no means an exhaustive list. You can click here to view all of our blends – check them out and experiment with something outside the box!
Summer in Michigan is a beautiful sight! Though, our Michigan evenings can be rather muggy. A favored remedy for this is a tall glass of iced tea, and Spice & Tea Merchants carries a vast selection for making just that! Teas like Black Currant, Blood Orange Smoothie, and Pink Rose Lemonade are just a few favorites.
However, if you want to take it to the next level, try turning your ordinary iced tea into a memorable cocktail! Check out the recipes below for fun ways to transform your tea into an adult refreshment.
Chamomile Honey Whiskey Cocktail
1 TSP Chamomile Citrus or Wild Blossoms & Berries Tea
2/3 Cup Boiling Water
1 Ounce Whiskey or Bourbon
1/2 TBSP Honey Granules (regular honey may be substituted)
1 & 1/2 TBSP Fresh Lemon Juice
Fresh Chamomile, Mint Sprig, and/or Lemon Wedge for garnish
1. Place the tea in an infuser, and let steep in the hot water for roughly 5 minutes. Remove the infuser once brewed (steeping tea too long will make it bitter).
2. Stir in the honey granules until fully dissolved.
3. In a shaker, combine the brewed tea, whiskey, lemon juice, and some ice. Shake.
4. Strain into a lowball/rocks glass with ice cubes. Garnish with chamomile flowers, a mint sprig, or lemon wedge.
Lavender Peach Martini
1 & 1/2 Ounces Vanilla Vodka
1/2 Ounce Fresh Lemon Juice
1/4 Ounce Peach Lavender Syrup (see below)
Flavored Sugar for rimming, we suggest lemon or vanilla
Lavender Sprig or Lemon Slice for garnish
1. In a cocktail shaker, add crushed ice, vanilla vodka, lemon juice, and peach lavender syrup. Shake.
2. Strain into a chilled martini glass (preferably rimmed with a flavored sugar). Garnish with a fresh lavender sprig or lemon slice.
1. In a saucepan bring the water and honey granules to a near boil. Stir thoroughly to dissolve the honey granules. Remove from heat.
2. Add the lavender peach tea and let simmer for about 30 minutes.
3. Strain out the tea. Store the syrup in the refrigerator (keeps for several weeks).
Prep: Place the tea in an infuser, and let steep in the hot water for roughly 3 minutes. Remove the infuser. Don't over steep the tea. If you prefer strong tea, use more tea when brewing – long steep times only make it bitter. Chill the tea until ready to use.
1. In a Collins glass, combine the lime juice, mint, and honey granules. Lightly muddle the mixture to release the oils in the mint.
2. Fill the glass with ice until it’s roughly 3/4 full. Add the rum, and top with the chilled tea. Stir well, and garnish with a slice of lime and mint sprig.
Believe it or not, you can grill almost any fruit! The trick is to grill them just before they’re fully ripe and to leave them in their peel (if applicable). Some popular fruits for grilling include apples, apricots, bananas, figs, peaches, pears, pineapple, plantains, plums, strawberries, and watermelon.
1. Start off by cutting the fruit and removing all seeds/cores (see below for recommend cuts).
-Apples, apricots, bananas, figs, peaches, pears, plantains, and plums: Simply cut them in half from top to bottom.
-Pineapple: Cut horizontally into rings or vertically into long wedges.
-Strawberries: Grilling these works best when placed on a pair of skewers.
-Watermelon: Cut into wedges – the rind may be left on or removed.
2. Season your fruit by adding any desired spices. Some spices that pair well with fruit are allspice, cinnamon (Korintje / Indonesian or Vietnamese), clove, ginger, lavender flowers, nutmeg, star anise, and vanilla beans. Also, check out our Baker’s Blend, a cinnamon centric mix containing many of the afore mentioned spices. Adding a bit of balsamic vinegar, brandy, honey, or rum will really enhanced the flavor as well.
3. Lightly spread olive oil or melted butter over the fruit to prevent it from sticking to the grill.
4. Make sure your grill grates are clean – you don’t want to alter the flavor with leftover BBQ sauce.
5. Fruit grills best when using indirect heat, so place it on the grill after the coals being to die out or off to the side.
6. Grill for approximately 10 minutes, turning occasionally. Sugars burn quickly, so be sure to keep a watchful eye on your fruit.
Serve as a side dish with a dab of yogurt, as a dessert with ice cream, or just lightly sprinkled with our flavored sugars. Have fun trying new favor combinations!
With spring finally in full bloom, keep yourself cool and experience the unique properties of floral refreshment! There’re a variety of flowers capable of infusing intoxicating aromas, colors, and flavors into your favorite drink. Three of the more popular ones Spice & Tea Merchants carries are hibiscus, lavender, and rose. Below are recipes for agua de jamaica (hibiscus tea), lavender lemonade, and rose syrup. Give them a whirl, and then experiment to see what exciting combinations you can come up with!
As a side note, the recipes below mainly pair flowers with a citrus, but other fruits like blueberries, cherries, peaches, plums, and strawberries may be thrown into the mix.
Agua de Jamaica (Hibiscus Tea)
Popular in the Caribbean, Central America and Mexico, this drink features hibiscus. The end result is a brew that’s deep red, cranberry-like, and has a sweet-tart flavor.
2 Quarts Water
1 Ounce Dried Hibiscus Flowers
1 Cup Honey Granules
4 TSP Lime Juice (about 1 large lime)
Garnish: A fresh lime wedge
Optional: For a spiced version, add the following spices while dissolving the sugar.
2 Ceylon Cinnamon Sticks
4 Allspice Berries, Whole
1. Put one quart water and the honey granules in a saucepan (add spices, if using).
2. Bring to a near boil and stir to dissolve honey granules. Remove from heat.
3. Add the dried hibiscus flowers and let steep about an hour.
4. Strain the mixture and discard the hibiscus (and spices).
5. Add the remaining quart of water and the lime juice. Let chill, serve over ice, and garnish with lime wedge.
Lavender, native to the Mediterranean region, has a vibrant deep purple-blue color and is intensely aromatic. When infused into lemonade, the result is a wonderfully fragrant and soothing bouquet of flavors.
2 Cups Boiling Water
3 TBSP Dried Lavender Flowers (culinary grade)
3/4 Cup Honey Granules
1 Cup Lemon Juice (about 4 large lemons)
4 Cups Cold Water
Garnish: A fresh sprig of lavender or lemon slice
Optional: 1 TBSP Earl Grey tea or Moonlight Earl Grey tea.
1. Place lavender flowers in a heat safe bowl or pitcher (something easy to strain from).
2. Pour boiling water over lavender (and Earl Grey tea, if using), let steep for 5 minutes.
3. Strain out the lavender (and tea), reserve the liquid. Mix in honey granules until dissolved.
4. Stir in cold water and lemon juice. Let chill, serve over ice, and garnish with a lavender sprig or lemon slice.
This recipe uses the heady quality of rose to yield a tantalizing simple syrup. We like to add a couple tablespoons to a glass and fill with club soda, or mix into our favorite cocktail. It’s also great in iced white tea, such as our Exotic Wedding, Meditative Mind, or White Peony.
1. In a saucepan bring the water and honey granules to a near boil. Stir thoroughly to dissolve the honey granules.
2. Add the rose buds/petals and let simmer for about five minutes. Remove from heat.
3. Add the lemon juice, and let the mix steep for about 30 minutes.
4. Strain out the rose buds/petals. Store the syrup in the refrigerator.
Grilling season is almost here! And at Spice & Tea Merchants we’re frequently asked about using marinades and rubs when grilling. Often there’s uncertainty as to when to use one over the other, so here’s a quick overview on the basics.
When considering using a marinade, the key is to determine if what you’re grilling requires tenderizing. In general, marinades work best on tougher cuts like chuck, flank, and round steaks. The plan with a marinade is to use an acidic liquid as the base, such as beer, citrus, pineapple juice, vinegar, wine, or even yogurt. This breaks down the tougher tissues which tenderizes the meat.
In preparing the marinade, be sure to make enough – usually 1/4 cup marinade to 1 pound of meat. As a tip, put the meat and marinade in a zip-lock bag. Then place the bag into a bowl (in case of leaks), and store in the refrigerator for 4-6 hours or overnight. Obviously, the larger the cut of meat, the longer it needs to marinate.
Marinades don’t have to be used just for tenderizing, they can be used simply for flavor as well. When marinating something requiring little tenderizing, such as fish or veggies, a marinating time of 2-3 hours is sufficient to allow the flavors to infuse.
A rub’s primary function is flavor, rather than tenderizing like marinades. To use a rub, be sure to pat the meat dry beforehand (helps the spices stick), then liberally coat each side. At this point the meat may be cooked immediately, or chilled in the refrigerator for at least an hour or overnight for a full robust flavor to develop. In either case, allow the meat to come up to room temperature before grilling (helps the meat cook evenly).
When grilling, start by searing the meat over high-heat, this will lend a savory crispy crust. Once seared, move it to a cooler spot on the grill to finish cooking.
An interesting side note, many rubs have a fair amount of salt in them. This is intentional, as salt helps fat melt during the cooking process – keeping the meat moist.
In many cases, the rubs above may be used as the seasoning component in marinades.
Whatever your preference, Spice & Tea Merchants has herbs and spices for your perfect marinade or rub. Fire up those grills and see what works best for you!
Did you know that there are 84.5 million Mother’s in the United States? I’m sure you are shopping for more than one of those!
Another fun fact shows what mothers really want for Mother's Day is something homemade or dinner! Well, lucky for you, we have thrown together some homemade Mother's Day gifts and we have the spices and tools to help YOU make her an amazing dinner this Mother's Day! Forget about the flowers and jewelry! This year, instead of buying that special lady in your life something she doesn't want, give her something she is sure to love!
If you stop into one of our stores this week, you're bound to find some special Mother's Day gifts and ideas. On top of our already amazing selection of spices, teas, gift baskets and more, we have prepared something special for that special someone in your life.
In our Saugatuck store, we are bundling 3 Caranda teas for $10! That's a steal, plus we are including a recipe card for cocktails. This special Mother's Day gift will also include a special heart infuser and will be packaged in our store for your convenience!
In our Grand Rapids store, we have built the perfect Mother's Day gift box. We have bundled a ducky tea infuser, a bar of our amazing oatmeal soap, 1 oz of peppermint patty tea, 1 chocolate rose and 2 chocolate truffles. This bundle will come packaged in a cigar box for only $39.95!!
In our Traverse City store, we will have a day packed full of fun. Included in the fun is music trivia all day with Pandora, iced tea samples and dips! Chocolate specials for Mother's Day include buy 4 get one FREE!
In our Ann Arbor location start Mother's Day off right with a free cup of tea for Mom! We'll also showcase our Blooming Tea Buds in an Adagio clear glass teapot - you can watch them unfurl and blossom right in the pot, and enjoy a great cup of tea once they've brewed. If you buy three buds, you get 10% off the Adagio Teapot!
If you're not seeing a Mother's Day package that is exactly what you're looking for, have no fear! Our amazing team at Spice & Tea Merchants is here to help! Let them know what your Mom enjoys, whether spice or tea, and they can customize a beautiful Mother's Day gift basket that is perfect for any mother!
If you want more information on the teas, spices and products we have, feel free to browse our website!