Sunday, October 5, 2014

Cookbook Review: The Mighty Spice Express

Title: Mighty Spice Express Cookbook: Fast, Fresh, and Full-on Flavors from Street Foods to the Spectacular

Author: John Gregory Smith

Format: Hardcover, 224 pages

Pub. Date: October 1st 2013

Source: Goodreads First Reads

Summary from Goodreads:
John Gregory-Smith's new book is a revelation. Drawing inspiration from Thailand, China, Taiwan, Malaysia, India, Mexico, Turkey, and Morocco, Gregory-Smith has created recipes that are super-quick to prepare and full of savory flavors.

Whether you're looking for a Mighty Bite, a Not Quite Lunch, a Midweek Lifesaver, Something Spectacular, or a Naughty but Nice recipe, even the most complicated meal takes less than 45 minutes to make.

Try the Taiwanese Beef Noodles, ready in 15 minutes, and made with a mix of spices that don't take long to cook, or his Cinnamon Fig Tarts, which you can make in 25 minutes. Here you'll find exotic flavors and tongue-tingling spices from every corner of the globe--all super fast.

With Mighty Spice Express, your spicy dishes don't have to simmer for hours or steep in complicated mixtures. Put away the pestle and mortar. Get all the taste without the sweat.


Four and a half stars.


One of my life missions is to make my girlfriend try more "exotic" foods. There's a lot of spices and bold flavors that she hasn't tried yet, and I had her in mind when I picked up this book. I have to say, this is quite the perfect little guide.

As the title hints, the "express" part of this book is that they're all meals or dishes that can be prepared quickly. Speed is definitely a main asset of this cookbook. At the beginning of the book, there's a book of all the spices that the recipes use, so that nothing takes you by surprise and you can be prepared to cook at a moment's notice. In addition to that, each recipe has little pictures of spices on the bottom so you know what's used without even reading the bulk of the recipe.

The pictures included are lovely, and I liked that there were personal stories peppered throughout the recipes. It helped give the book a more passionate and authentic feel. I've never been to India or anywhere remotely close, but these stories helped to draw me in and made me want to try more of the dishes. These recipes are divided by course, making it easy to plan meals ahead of time.

A lover of bold flavors, there are SO many recipes in here that I cannot wait to try. That being said, the ones that jumped out the most to me include Crab and Scallion Pancakes, Goan Cinnamon & Mint Chicken Curry, Crawfish, Pink Grapefruit & Glass Noodle Salad, Pineapple & Lime Pie.

I'd recommend this book to anyone wanting to branch out into new flavor territory, or anyone with a busy schedule that requires quick but delicious meals. I received this book from the Goodreads First Reads program in exchange for my honest review.


  1. I love the sound of this cookbook, I definitely need more spices in my life, and I'm touched that you thought of me when getting this book. "I liked that there were personal stories peppered throughout the recipes." this made me chuckle a little, you punny human bean <3. I personally can't wait to try recipes from this book, it sounds wonderful!