One of my favorite authors is Isabel Allende and I’m re-reading her delightful book, Aphrodite–A Memoir of the Senses. It is beautifully written, filled with her insights and vivid, colorful descriptions for all our senses, while offering suggestions to reconnect us with our surroundings to create a  more sensual life.  Her research is extensive, and her stories of times and places far away are delicately woven throughout the book, making it a visual and sensory treat!

She describes savoring food, wine and our surroundings in the most beautiful,  erotic and desirable manner.  She believe herbs and spices are the soul of your kitchen.  A simple, bland piece of chicken can enlivened with selected spices, taking us to faraway lands with the smells and tastes of a culture.

If you’re passport isn’t up to date, or you don’t have time to pack and leave the country this week, why not wander down the spice aisle and try a new spice that sings out to you to create something exotic for dinner.

(Note: Buy spices in small quantities. A little goes along way and you just can’t use even that much cinnamon in a year.  Date each spice and toss them after a year. )