This piquant North African spice mix, whose name means “top of the shop” in Arabic, is used in virtually every dish from that region, including the Moroccan mrouzia, honey-braised lamb shanks. This recipe first appeared in our November 2012 issue along with Jay Cheshes’s story Couscous Royale.


  • 3 tbsp. whole allspice
  • 3 tbsp. whole black peppercorns
  • 3 tbsp. coriander seeds
  • 2 tbsp. whole cloves
  • 2 tbsp. cumin seeds
  • 5 sticks cinnamon, broken into 1″ pieces
  • 2 tbsp. ground ginger
  • 1 12 tbsp. ground cayenne


  1. Working in batches, grind allspice, peppercorns, coriander, cloves, cumin, and cinnamon separately in a spice grinder until finely ground; transfer spices to a bowl, and stir in ginger and cayenne. Store in an airtight container for up to 2 months.