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Saugatuck, MI 49453

Blog Categories: Holiday

Buttered Moonlight Earl Grey

Posted 12/14/2016

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 TBSP Moonlight Earl Grey
2 TSP Baker’s Blend
1 TSP Vanilla Bean Infused Cane Sugar
2 & 1/2 TBSP Butter

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.

This recipe may be used with other full-bodied teas, such as regular Earl Grey (or Decaf), Assam, Black Dragon Pearls, or Chai blends.

Filed under Holiday | Tea | Beverages |

Turkey Rubs

Posted 11/17/2016


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.

Traditional Blends:
*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.

Unique Blends:
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!

Filed under Poultry | Thanksgiving | Holiday |

Pork Tenderloins

Posted 03/18/2016


With Easter being early this year, some folks have been caught off-guard in terms of what to prepare for their main dish. One of the more popular (and simple) options is a well-seasoned pork tenderloin. Especially these days, as advances in agriculture have lead to leaner pork products – particularly the loin cuts (loin cuts lack excess fat).

Due to pork tenderloin’s mild flavor, it’s best prepared with a marinade or spice rub, and Spice & Tea Merchants has just the thing! Below you’ll find a recipe for Citrus Pork Tenderloin, which features our Citrus Pork & Poultry blend as a marinade. It’s great for dinner parties, family gatherings, Holidays, or even something simple on weeknights.

While our Citrus Pork & Poultry blend is fantastic way to enhance your tenderloin, it’s by no means the only option. Once you’ve tried the recipe below, try experimenting with our Coffee BBQ, Cranberry Maple, or Raspberry Chipotle rubs. As a general guideline, simply rub the tenderloin, then sear and roast it in the same fashion as steps 5-8 in the recipe below. (Though, you’ll want to season generously in step 5. And let sit for roughly 20 minutes before searing to allow the rub to permeate the meat.)

Citrus Pork Tenderloin

1 Pork Tenderloin (1-2 lb)
1 Cup Orange Juice
1/2 Cup Low-Sodium Broth (Chicken or Vegetable)
1/2 TBSP Butter
Citrus Pork & Poultry blend
Orange slices and parsley for garnish

1. Create marinade by mixing together orange juice, broth, and 2 TSP of the Citrus Pork & Poultry blend.

2. From the marinade, reserve 3/4 cup for the serving sauce.

3. Place the tenderloin and marinade in a zip lock bag. Let marinate for at least 2-3 hours or overnight in refrigerator. (Place the zip lock bag in a bowl to contain any leaks.)

4. When ready to cook, preheat the oven to 400 degrees.

5. Remove the tenderloin from the marinade, and lightly season each side with a bit of the Citrus Pork & Poultry blend (as if using salt & pepper). Discard the used marinade.

6. Heat a small amount of oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the tenderloin and sear on all sides, about 5 minutes. (Don’t discard the pan or drippings, they’re reused later.)

7. Place the tenderloin in the oven, and roast until the tenderloin’s internal temperature reads 150-155 degrees F, about 25-35 minutes. (When getting a temperature reading, run the thermometer horizontally through the end of the meat. This accurately represents the temperature at the center.)

8. Once at the desired temperature, transfer tenderloin to a clean cutting board and cover with foil. Let rest for 10 minutes before slicing.

9. To create the serving sauce, in the pan used for searing, add the reserved 3/4 cup of marinade and bring to a boil. Deglaze the browned bits from the pan.

10. Reduce heat to medium, add the butter to the sauce, and cook until slightly reduced.

11. To serve, spoon some of the sauce over the sliced tenderloin, and garnish with orange slices and a bit of parsley.

Filed under Pork | Holiday |
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