Adadaba. Although seemingly counterintuitive, this is not an infant’s first babbles. It’s a spice and a very intricate and comprehensive one indeed. When they called it “multi-purpose”, I thought: Okay, flavors should then blend well with chicken, vegetables, some red meat, some fish, etc. I hardly expected it to include everything in an advanced spice rack! Over 40 spices go into this super-spice.
Ingredients: Allspice, Basil, Celery Seed, Cinnamon, Cloves, Cumin, Curry Powder (a blend of 7 spices), Dextrose, Dill Weed, Granulated Garlic, Garlic Powder, Ginger, Marjoram, Nutmeg, Granulated Onion, Onion Powder, Onion Salt, Oregano, Sweet Paprika, Parsley, Black Pepper, White Pepper, Crushed Red Pepper, Rosemary, Sage, Sour Salt, Sea Salt, Savory, Spearmint, Tarragon, Thyme, Turmeric and MSG.
When I opened the tiny package I had bought from the Seattle market to take a whiff, it was like an entire spice family reunion! The amount of spices blew me away. Perhaps all you are able to utter after experiencing it is the mindless prattle: “adadaba”.
In the package, the spice is a burnt orange color, with flecks of green and brownish black. When I smelled the chaotic culmination of spices, the obvious dominant spice jumped out at me first: curry, garlic, turmeric, cumin, tarragon, etc. I decided to test it out on some shrimp; a nice clean, light meal for this blisteringly hot day of over 102˚. Also, I figured that my ordinary shrimp and rice could use the extra “oomph”.
The waft I got from the adadaba only brushed the surface of the deep intensity of flavor that it punched out when eaten. After cooked and mixed in with food, the curry and turmeric paint most a yellow color, speckled with some black dots from the pepper and darker spices. The flavor was spicy, but with strong aromatic qualities. It was delicious; however I was glad to have had the rice to dilute some of it down, as I had just dredged the shrimp through a little bowl of the adadaba. Next time I might add filler of some sort; just a teaspoon or two of flour to help keep the balance.
The recipe itself was simple. And when you hardly want to move out from underneath the fan blowing cool air on your face, that’s a plus.
Adadaba Shrimp and Avocados
7 raw shrimp, shelled and deveined
Less than 2 T adadaba spice
About 2 tsp all-purpose flour
1 T olive oil
1 T lemon juice
½ ripe Hass avocado, chopped
Salt and pepper
1. Cook rice.
2. Heat olive oil in small frying pan over medium high heat until hot.
3. Mix adadaba and flour, dredge shrimp through.
4. Fry shrimp until pink and nearly curled – about 1 min a side.
5. Add lemon juice, avocado, salt and pepper and cooked shrimp to rice. Mix. Serve.