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Olivier Roellinger developed the Retour des Indes in 1982, and was his first, and most classic of blends. It defines his signature dish, the John Dory Retour des Indes. It’s made with a blend of 14 spices, which include turmeric, mustard, cumin, thyme, star anise, Szechuan peppercorns, coriander, mace, and six others. It offers a gustatory explosion of flavor, a bouquet of exotic taste that will transport you around the world.
Use the Roellinger Retour des Indes for anything—meats, poultry, fish and shellfish, as well as coconut milk-based sauces.
Olivier Roellinger was the son a doctor and studied chemistry to “please his mother.” But in 1976, at the age of 21, he was attacked, beaten with an iron bar and left for dead. He spent weeks in a coma, and two years in recovery. It was food and cooking that kept him going, and shifted his life’s direction.
In 1982, he and his wife, Jane, opened Restaurant Le Bricourt in the Maison du Voyageur, Olivier’s childhood home. It was an immediate success, garnering two toques only six months after opening, and rated 15/20 in the Gault et Millau Guide. In 1984, it obtained its first Michelin Star; its second was given in 1988, and its third in 2006.
But at the age of 53, in 2008, he believed he was no longer enough to oversee culinary preparations on a daily basis, and decided to close his 3-Michelin Star restaurant. He converted Maison de Bricourt into a laboratory kitchen for the production of his now iconic spices and spice blends. He remained pursuing new ways of cooking in Le Coquillage at Le Coquillage at Château Richeux, his marine bistro.
He became vice president of the International Association of Relais & Châteaux in 2009, and was given the rank of Commander in the Order of Arts and Letters in 2011 by the Minister of Culture and Communication. Roellinger, along with Pierre Gagnaire and Michel Bras, has become one of the pillars of contemporary French cuisine.
His son Hugo has taken over the kitchen in Le Coquillage, and his daughter Mathilde has taken on expanding the spice mixtures and oils.
Keep your spices tightly covered and store them in a cool, dry place. Whole spices stay fresh for up to 2 years while ground spices have a 6-month shelf life. Pro tip: red spices such as paprika and red pepper can be stored in the refrigerator to hold their color and keep their flavor longer.