I'm a big advocate of using spices in my cooking. Not outrageous amounts of global spice blends in a meal just for the sake of using them.
But I mean going after a particular flavor from a part of the world where a lot can be learned just by making a native dish.
This story from the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel takes a look at a food and catering company called Afro Fusion Cuisine. Yollande Tchouapi Deacon, a native of Cameroon, brought the flavors of her youth to the region.
It not only tells a great story about a growing business, but examines the different spice blends which you can buy or put together yourself.
A couple of my favorites are Jamaican Jerk seasoning and Herbes de Provence.
Jamaican Jerk seasoning includes allspice, cinnamon, brown sugar, red pepper, cloves, cumin, salt and black pepper. Usually mixed with oil to season meats for grilling and stews.
Herbes de Provence includes dried thyme, savory, marjoram, rosemary and lavender. While not technically a spice blend, it's commonly used like one to flavor meats, especially poultry. It's also excellent on root vegetables.