Welcome to Spice School!

We offer a variety of spice classes at our Cambridge, MA shop. They are intimate classes (limited to 10 students) and fill up fast. Class gift certificates are available HERE to purchase and make a wonderful "sensory experiential" present. Don’t hesitate to email us with any questions: info@curiospice.com


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Hands-on Spice Blending   ***SOLD OUT***   $85
Monday, June 18 • 6–9 pm  
Taught by Claire Cheney

Learn all about the beauty of spice blending! You will make your own spice blends in class and learn about how we approach creating a new blend - from idea to execution. You will get an in-depth look at our flavor theory and how we use it to build balance and originality into our blends. You will also learn about the traditions inherent to spice blending and how spices give us an incredible lens through which to learn about history and culture.

You will  smell and taste lots of spices and also you'll be fed a few special treats (savory and sweet) made with our blends so you can understand the impact of quality spices on food. 

Each student will take home 4 spice blends made in class ~ 3 traditional blends that we'll create together and 1 blend of your very own creation.
 

Indian Street Food ~ A Festival of Flavor   $85
Monday, July 16 • 6–8 pm
Taught by Suman Shah

Sometimes the best food is found in the most unlikely places — which in India might be at a tiny, roadside cart. Street food is quintessential to Indian cuisine, as a snack to tide you over until dinner or sometimes as a full meal in itself. In this demonstration class, Suman Shah will lead us on an imaginary trek from Boston to Bombay and introduce us to some of her favorite street foods, as diverse as Indian cuisine itself.

Street food recipes are an easy way to try Indian cooking at home and are more flavorful than any take-out! Join us for this tangy, crunchy, spicy, and delicious journey right here at Curio Spice in Cambridge.

Click HERE to purchase tickets!

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Suman draws inspiration from her Indian roots (Calcutta to Mumbai) and a life of almost twenty years in New England. When not hosting cooking demos or classes around Boston or at farmer’s markets, she’s writing about food, life, and photography. Recipes on her blog Fork on a Road show us her instinctive style of cooking from different corners of the world. She makes familiar foods in unexpected ways, making them easily adaptable and accessible for a busy life. Find her on Instagram @forkonaroad and learn more at her website.


The Curious Cocktail Class   $85
Monday, July 23 • 6–8 pm  
Taught by Meredith Powell

Looking for ways to add unique flavor and dimension to your bar this summer? Join our friend Meredith Powell for the inaugural Curious Cocktail Class.

Spices have been used throughout history to add depth and interest to alcohol, but recently bartenders have started using spices to create "craft cocktails" — libations that delight the senses with hand-made syrups, bitters, and infusions. You can sample such cocktails at a bar, but why not hone your entertainment skills and learn to make them yourself?

Meredith will demonstrate three different spice infused cocktails (one shaken, one stirred, and one punch) to arm you with new techniques and delightful flavors. We’ll be serving thoughtfully paired snacks, prepared by Orange Door Kitchen, to accompany the drinks.

Click HERE to purchase tickets!

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Orange Door Kitchen is a new and exciting event space and commercial kitchen that’s located in West Acton, MA and is the collaborative venture of husband and wife team, Chris and Meredith Powell. ODK grew out of their life-long love of food, cooking, and bringing people together to celebrate life through food. Chris and Meredith are also active in several local and national food-access and food-justice non-profits. Find them on Instagram @OrangeDoorKitchn and learn more about ODK at their website.

 


Read About Our Past events:

Spice 101 ~ Spring into Summer   

Ready to take your spring & summer cooking to the next level? Our Spice 101 ~ Spring Into Summer class will give you confidence to launch into your summer recipes with new knowledge and flavors!

Menu: Mastic lemon spritz, Kozani spiced gougères; early-summer salad with baie roses dressing; Chili Today tacos (vegetarian or carnitas), Fleur spiced rhubarb friands & flower tea.

In this class, you’ll learn how to use spices in unexpected ways, gain some olfactory training (like sniffing wine), and master some technical skills, such as knowing when to toast and grind spices or not. We’ll explore a bit of spice history and introduce you to the science of aroma — and you’ll enjoy a tasting menu of memorable drinks, appetizers, mains, and desserts. You’ll return home armed with recipes and new culinary excitement. 

Indian Spices & Cooking ~ Vegetarian Delights
Monday, April 9th with Suman Shah

Join us for a demonstration class with local chef and vegetarian recipe developer, Suman Shah to learn how to layer flavors, use spices, and balance flavors like an Indian home cook.

You’ll enjoy a tasting menu including delightful drinks, appetizers, a main dish, and a
dessert — and head home with recipes and tips for successfully making them at home. 

Suman draws inspiration from her Indian roots (Caluctta to Mumbai) and a life of almost twenty years in New England. When not hosting cooking demos or classes around Boston or at farmer’s markets, she’s writing about food, life and photography. Her Market Day and Vegetarian Voyager recipes on her blog Fork on a Road show us her instinctive style of cooking from different corners of the world. She makes familiar foods in unexpected ways, making them healthy, versatile and easily adaptable for a busy life. Find her on Instagram @forkonaroad.

 Fat fennel seeds waiting to be toasted for garam masala.

Fat fennel seeds waiting to be toasted for garam masala.

Hands-On Spice Blending Class 
Monday, March 12th with Claire Cheney

Learn all about the beauty of spice blending! You will make your own spice blends in class and learn about how we approach creating a new blend - from idea to execution. You will get an in-depth look at our flavor theory and how we use it to build balance and originality into our blends. You will also learn about the traditions inherent to spice blending and how spices give us an incredible lens through which to learn about history and culture.

You will  smell and taste lots of spices and also you'll be fed a few special treats (savory and sweet) made with our blends so you can understand the impact of quality spices on food. 

Each student will take home 4 spice blends made in class ~ 3 traditional blends that we'll create together and 1 blend of your very own creation.

Spice Identity ~ An International Tour  
February 26, 2018 with Claire Cheney

Together, we’ll “trek” to three countries during the evening, making a virtual visit to Japan, Greece and Sri Lanka, each an important source for Curio’s spices. We’ll regale you with a few origin stories and learn about the key spices of these three ancient cuisines. You’ll learn how to make a dish or two that are typical of each country. We’ll discuss why spices play an important role in defining the identity of place and the terroir of spices and how honoring this tradition will make your cooking more vivid.

You’ll enjoy a tasting menu of memorable drinks, appetizers, mains, and desserts and head home armed with recipes and new culinary knowhow. 

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Spice 101 ~  Winter Refresh  
January 22, 2018 with Claire Cheney

As happy as they are, the holidays can leave us weary and unexcited about stepping back into the kitchen. Spice 101 ~ Winter Refresh is sure to reinvigorate your kitchen mojo.

Menu: Mastic Lemon Spritz, saffron popovers with easy pepper marmalade; salad with baie roses dressings; toasted spiced chicken with clementines Greek lemon & herb cake & flower tea.

In this class, you’ll learn how to use spices in unexpected ways, gain some olfactory training (like sniffing wine), and master some technical skills, such as knowing when to toast and grind spices or not. We’ll explore a bit of spice history and introduce you to the science of aroma — and you’ll enjoy a tasting menu of memorable drinks, appetizers, mains, and desserts. You’ll return home armed with recipes and new culinary excitement. $85 per person.

 

Thai Cooking
October 19, 2017 with Renu Kaewdulduk

Join us at Curio with Chiang Mai native & wonderful chef Renu to learn about the spices and flavors that are signature to Thai food. You may have tasted her cooking at one of her pop-ups at Urban Hearth, next door, but now you can learn how to re-create those flavors at home. Curio founder Claire spent 4 months in Thailand before launching her business, and will share some of her knowledge of Thai spices. Learn how to make som tum (green papaya salad), Thai cocktails, and even your own authentic Thai curry paste. $65 per person includes drinks, tasting and recipes to take home. 

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Spice 101 Class ~ Summer Cooking
June 29, 2017 with Claire Cheney

In Spice 101 Summer Cooking you'll learn new techniques on how to make the most of your spices for your summer recipes, from grilling to picnics to simple dinners. With both sensory training like how to tell the difference between black, pink and sichuan peppers as well as why to use certain salts with certain foods you'll leave feeling both energized and inspired to cook. We'll cover a bit of history and science while also arming you with recipes for cool drinks, appetizers, mains and desserts with flavors you won't forget.



Rose & Flowers Spice Class
June 7, 2017 with Eva Sommaripa & Chef Didi Emmons

Learn about using beautiful edible flowers in your cooking. From fresh flowers like Rosa rugosa petals to dried flowers like culinary lavender, your heart and palate will be truly lifted. Eva will bring gorgeous edibles from her garden and Didi will teach you about how to prepare some simple & heavenly dishes. 


Sweet Sugar Sultry Spice: Exotic Flavors to Wake up Your Baking ~  Book Signing
May 13, 2017 with the author, Malika Ameen

Come meet Malika and pick up some wonderful spices to pair with her beautiful new baking book. The book is brimming with gorgeous photos and original recipes.

"Malika has a deep understanding and love for spice with a style that is uniquely her own. She writes with a Chicago heart, French respect, and a Pakistani soul, sharing sweet memories and recipes that change the way we experience flavors in dessert."
- Ana Sortun & Maura Kilpatrick, authors of Spice and Soframiz

 

Earth Day Party! 
APRIL 22, 2017

How will climate change affect FOOD in the future? How can you be a part of positive change? Join us for a tasting of delicious global snacks and activities to deepen your knowledge of climate change and food security with the new United Nation's Cookbook "Adaptive Farms, Resilient Tables" (check out the Globe article here) now available at Curio for a suggested donation to the United Nations Development Programme. 

Andrea Egan from the UNDP will be here from 1-3pm to show a slide show of photos from her work with the UN Development Programme around the world. 

"[The Cookbook] features traditional recipes from six countries – Cabo Verde, Cambodia, Haiti, Mali, Niger and Sudan – and tells the personal stories of how people have coped when their traditional sources of food have begun to change." - Jennifer Baumwoll & Andrea Egan United Nations Development Programme

 

Spring Spice Dinner
April 6-8, 2017 at Urban Hearth Restaurant, Cambridge

On April 6th, 7th and 8th neighbors Urban Hearth and Curio Spice Co. pair up to celebrate the new season with a menu highlighting Curio's directly sourced spices and Urban Hearth's seasonal, creative cuisine. Urban Hearth is a lovely café during the daytime (Tues-Sun) and for three nights each week they offer dinner service featuring seasonal, global cuisine in a warm, convivial environment. 

The spring spice dinner (prix fixe for either 3 or 5 courses, including a complimentary cocktail!) will delight your senses with dishes such as: burrata with lavender oil, orange and fennel, Peketoe crab with rose and coriander, locally fished Skate with morels, saffron and vanilla, and goat cheese Tortelli with peas, young garlic broth and Curio's signature Herbes de Romance. Chef-owner Erin Miller and Curio founder Claire will be there to join the conversation and share their shared passion for flavor.

To reserve your spot at the Spring Spice Dinner, head over to Urban Hearth
Hope to see you there!

 

Introduction to Ayurveda & Spices
March 21, 2017 with Tobin Hack

 Join us Tuesday evening, at Curio Spice, for a taste of Ether, Air, Fire, Water, and Earth -- the five great building blocks at the foundation of this 5,000 year-old medical art. Which of the elements make up your unique constitution, and how can you harness their power – through diet, lifestyle, and judicious use of culinary spices – to bring yourself into balance?  You’ll leave with an understanding of the three constitution types – Vata, Pitta, and Kapha – as well as plenty of Ayurvedic diet and lifestyle tips, and a recipe for a delicious bedtime tonic called Ojas Milk.  Tobin Hack is a Boston-based writer. She holds an MFA in fiction from NYU and a BA in English from Princeton University, and is working towards a 650-hour Ayurvedic Health Counselor certification from the Kripalu Center for Yoga and Health.

Join us Tuesday evening, at Curio Spice, for a taste of Ether, Air, Fire, Water, and Earth -- the five great building blocks at the foundation of this 5,000 year-old medical art. Which of the elements make up your unique constitution, and how can you harness their power – through diet, lifestyle, and judicious use of culinary spices – to bring yourself into balance?

You’ll leave with an understanding of the three constitution types – Vata, Pitta, and Kapha – as well as plenty of Ayurvedic diet and lifestyle tips, and a recipe for a delicious bedtime tonic called Ojas Milk.

Tobin Hack is a Boston-based writer. She holds an MFA in fiction from NYU and a BA in English from Princeton University, and is working towards a 650-hour Ayurvedic Health Counselor certification from the Kripalu Center for Yoga and Health.


From the Field ~ Madagascar Spice Class
March 23, 2017  with Claire Cheney & Matt Amato

An evening to learn all about Madagascar spices and how to cook with them. Our friend and former Peace Corps volunteer Matt Amato will join us to share his experiences working with vanilla farmers, and you'll take home recipes and your own vial of vanilla beans. 25% of your ticket purchase (as well as any Malagasy souvenirs you choose to buy) will benefit Macolline, a non-profit working to protect the Madagascar forest and generate jobs in the region we source vanilla. *UPDATE: Macolline is now working to help with recovery efforts related to the terrible destruction of cyclone Enawo and your help is greatly appreciated.