Do you feel a little bit of Carrie Bradshaw in you as soon as you think of shopping for masalas at a wholesale spice market in india? Well, we don’t blame you, that’s the fanciest one can go while thinking of “spices”. But let’s come back and talk about these woody, aromatic, and flavorful plants/seeds that every Indian has seen in their kitchen at all times.
The only “Khaane ka swaad” you can get is when you have a platter tasting like a burst of flavors on your taste buds tingling from every corner of your mouth. Ah! Well, we should be diving into the expansive range of spices one finds in an Indian kitchen.
- Black Pepper Corns
Used whole or ground, but there’s no denying that Black Pepper is the king of spices. Most of the Indian dishes would be unequipped if they lack the fiery taste and aroma of Black Pepper. These tiny little seeds are used to add just the right amount of spice to your meals. Black pepper is also a great source of nutrients, comes with a lot of health benefits. From improving digestion to increasing metabolism, and treating skin problems, you name it and it can solve so many issues. Your go-to spice for achieving the perfect health-taste balance.
The crescent-shaped seeds are used whole or roasted burnt and crushed into a powder form for that desi tadka in your curries. They come with a strong aroma and earthy flavor, this spice is also known to have anti-carcinogenic properties since it is high in manganese.
The wonder spice of the kitchen should be declared the paramedic of spices. Apart from bringing the blooming bright color in your food, the spice can treat so many ailments as well. This gold reserve is extensively sauteed with other ingredients such as onion, garlic, tomatoes at the beginning. The spice is as fancy too, doesn’t just goes well with the food but can also be served as the turmeric latte in chilly winters.
The funky Indian spice as we like to call it! This one has a pungent taste to it and a potent smell that all of us have run away from at one point. Agreed? Native to Iraq and Afghanistan, the spice of the fennel family has made its way into the Indian kitchen and has been quite a star if we must say. When it comes to cooking, a little goes a long way for “heeng” as it is popularly known in India. The spice comes as a coarse brown powder. Add this to your culinary experience to get that lingering taste like that of garlic and onions without sodium of course.
- India Bay Leaf
Used as a tempering spice Indian bay leaf is called Tej Patta in Hindi. Commonly found in biryani, pulao, soups, curries, and most Indian dishes, it adds a dash of warm peppery taste to your meal. Tejpatta might also help prevent stomach ulcers by reducing the free radical damage since it is rich in antioxidants and also has anti-inflammatory properties.
- Red Chilli Powder
Used as a spice or seasoning, use them to flavor most curries and dry dishes. It is typically lightly fried with oil in the initial stages of the preparation of the dish. Some states in India, such as Rajasthan, make entire dishes only by using spices and chilies.
With the right mix of spices in proper quantity, Indian food becomes soul food and elevates your mood. It is the spices that make people all over the world go GaGa for Indian cooking. Passed on from generation to generation spices have been a key element of Indian cooking.