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The Pantry Alphabet: A


What is it?

Do you have this ingredient in your pantry?

Which of these recipes from The Perfect Pantry contains today's ingredient?

1. Slow cooker Punjabi eggplant with potatoes
2. Moqueca (Brazilian fish stew)
3. Salmon tikka

When you guess which recipe contains the ingredient, please leave only the number 1, 2 or 3 in the comments below. Please don't leave the name of the ingredient, so others can have fun guessing, too. And let us know if you have this in your pantry.

(Spoiler alert: You can use today's ingredient to make sun block, or war paint, or "cow stuck in the mud".)

See you next Saturday, for the letter B.

Disclosure: The Perfect Pantry earns a few pennies on purchases made through the Amazon.com links in this post. Thank you for supporting this site when you start your shopping here.



I don't have it in my pantry but I've been meaning to track some down for a recipe I want to try!


Don't have this in my pantry...yet.

Long time lurker at your blog! Finally decided to leave a comment


Do not have it in my pantry and need to get it

Number 2.

I think it's in number two, and nope, don't have any in my pantry!

The mystery ingredient is 2. I am so pleased that you posted the recipe links as, even though I have seen the recipes before, I had not looked at them. I have now saved them all and shall try and cook them in the next couple of weeks. What would be a replacement for these seeds if you cannot get them?



Ans: 2

Not in my pantry.

Have always found that american cheese to be a bit of a worry.

Cheers, Robyn

Recipe #2 . I don't have it my pantry . That's neat that it's used in sunblock ;)

Number 2. No, I read a very intriguing article about it in the local food mag but still have not added it to my pantry.

2, I do have it. :)

Bern, you could substitute a pinch of turmeric, or hot paprika, or saffron, or a mix of any two. Great question!

Hi, i believe it is no-2
i don't have it in pantry and i couldn't even figure out its name in Hebrew, so wouldn't know how to get it if i wanted to.

Its 2. And I don't have it, but know a lot of folks locally use it here.

2 - Never seen it before in my pantry or anywhere else.

# 2 Yes! It's in the spice drawer & I purchased more just yesterday!

I don't have it in my pantry, but it's in some things I use. Turmeric would be a good substitute. I use it all the time for color, taste, and anti-inflammatory.
Looks like this alphabet is going to be interesting and fun!

2. Don't have in my pantry - but would like some!

2 - I have it growing in my back yard

Having absolutely no idea what the ingredient is, I followed the clues in the comments. Now I must make #2, but where do I get today's ingredient?

#2, and it's not in my pantry. I've actually never heard of it before!

Just One Donna, tricky to answer without giving too much away, but you can find this ingredient online from Penzeys or The Spice House, or at Compare supermarket in Providence or similar ethnic markets. Everyone: I'll update this comment with more specific info later this week!

Number 2 - don't have it in my pantry....yet!

Number 2- I just bought some a couple of weeks ago to to flavor an oil- haven't got to it yet...

No. 2 My pantry is too mild to include it.

2. Wish I did have some in my pantry!

Two, I think I have an advantage being from ri!!

2. And I do have it in my pantry. I use it when I make traditional Mexican food. It also comes in a soft brick, but that's more of a challenge to find even here. The history of it is quite interesting...

#2 and no, it's not in my pantry! Hadn't even heard of it before. I was so sure those were dried cranberries (in my defence I am reading from an iphone!). Great idea by the way. Looking forward to B!

No. 2, and yes, I have some in my pantry.

2 and we used to have it in our pantry but we didn't get around to cooking anything with it.


Kellypea, I've never seen it in a brick. Fascinating!

2...............I have had it and used it

2 -- it's in my pantry, since the prehistoric days of the Time-Life Foods of the World (appropriate volume)

My first purchase, after a while, got buggy...

Number 2. Paste made with this is a staple in my house.

#2. I used to have some, but not any longer.

2. I have some: I use it to color mac & cheese when I make it with white cheddar.

Recipe #2. I use it to make a lovely coloured oil, mostly for Puerto Rican cooking.

We have this in powdered form (as the others said, for use in #2)

I would be disinclined to substitute with turmeric. I'd rather omit it. For me turmeric is much stronger flavoured than the mystery ingredient.

#2 and YES, it's in my pantry.

#2... This is fun and your site usually stays open in a tab on my PC.

I am wondering how long these last.
I have some I bought when exploring a new grocery.

2. I don't have it in my pantry. Love the way you have us rereading recipes - great reminder of dishes I want to cook!

#2 Knew this right away, very popular in Puerto Rican cooking, name is different in Spanish but also starts with an A. As a powder it is an ingredient in sazón which flavors many dishes especially arroz con gandules,or warm it in oil to make a flavored oil for dishes such as pasteles.

It's 2, no, it's not in my pantry, but I'm sure I need some! I am looking forward to B.

2 do not have any of it in my Pantry.


No. 2 - it's in my Florida pantry, and I use it to make a very colorful oil for bright yellow aioli.

SRivera, you are absolutely correct. Thanks for adding this info, too.

If it's number two, I have plenty of it in my pantry. It's an essential ingredient for Yucatecan food.


Thanks to some of the above, I dug in the pantry and found it in a paste too -- with salt, spices and garlic. The A is grown in Yucatan, Mexico. I see I have to pursue this to learn how to use it.

2...and very interested in this ingredient since I'm cooking for a Brazilian boss.....THANKS!

2 and I have several forms of it in my pantry!

I must admit I was stumped at first. but then some of the comments tipped me off.
however once I realized what it was, I can also say that I have it in my spice pantry but in ground from - I have never seen it in any other form!
(I like this fun new feature!)

2. I'm out at the moment. I sometimes use it to color home-made cheese.

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