The Food Rub Company is a small family firm based in Cheshire in the UK. My wife and I have always been interested in the ‘alchemy’ of food, particularly the way in which spices and herbs can alter, improve and enhance dishes and how the use of certain spices are identified with particular country’s food, culture and history.
A Brief history of Spices
There was a time when spices were considered more valuable than gold and weight for weight that probably still holds true today in respect of Saffron. Many cultures also claim that spices have medicinal qualities. Cinnamon for instance, probably the world’s oldest known spice, is claimed to have one of the highest antioxidant values of all foods. It is used in to treat everything from nausea to menstruation discomfort and low energy to diabetes.
Closely guarded secrets
Anyway, back to us and our fascination with spices. We spent a lot of time in France, then in later years we spent (and still spend) time in America, a country not particularly renowned for its cuisine – or is it? After all, America is a melting pot of European culture and one particular facet of this is their use of spice mixes known as ‘rubs’ or dry rubs, particularly in the south, where rub recipes can be a closely guarded family secret, with recipes being passed down from father to son, mother to daughter.
The range of ‘rubs’ in the USA is impressive, playing a large part in modern American cuisine culture. Certain ‘rubs’ have their own ’following’ in much the same way as some people always buy certain types of coffee. Rubs, seasonings and dry marinades are spreading in popularity throughout other countries, including the UK as people begin to realise their potential for producing quick, healthy and tasty dishes, with the minimum of effort.
Quick, easy and healthy
What particularly appealed to us about Rubs is that they are so appropriate to the way we all live our lives these days, in a hurry mostly – and Rubs provide the perfect method of preparing tasty succulent food with the minimum of time and fuss. Also, part from the all-important taste and flavour enhancements, there are health benefits too.
Meet Our Chef – Alex Costello
Alex Costello has always been passionate about food since he first learned to cook the basics. Since then he has been on a mission to find new dishes or interesting takes on the classics. He has been working in catering and kitchens for the last six years. His previous years were spent working for a luxury hotel-restaurant, under the award-winning and published Head Chef (David Jackson) as well as working at a top gourmet restaurant in the Lakes.
Alex’s time was spent learning and implementing the practical and theoretical skills necessary to organise a busy kitchen and produce dishes to an excellent standard.