Garam Masala

A very important spice blend in our pantry is Garam Masala. Aromatic, floral and powerful, this particular blend adds a zing to most North-Indian, Punjabi dishes. I have been making my own Garam Masala for quite some time. One reason why my recipes call for such small quantities of Garam Masala. However, the quantity will need to be increased if using the store brought version. I am unhappy with the store brought version because they are mostly a combination of cumin and coriander and much less other floral spices that actually make dishes fragrant. It is indeed very simple to make and a little goes a long way. In fact the quantity mentioned below lasts me for more than 4-5 months :)
This is also a versatile blend. I know we have our favorite spices, not-so-favored spices and cannot-stand-spices. Honey for instance hates cloves, I for instance cannot take too much of cardamom. This blend therefore can be altered according to ones taste. I am after a couple of tries, we will end up with out perfect version of Garam Masala. I did after a couple of attempts and this is my favorite version from my test kitchen!!

Also Garam Masala especially the home made kinds should be used almost at the very end of the cooking process;overcooked spices sort of smell acrid and I hate it. Most store brought varieties withstand rigorous cooking because they are more of a coriander-cumin mixture than a combination of delicate floral spices.

Garam Masala

This makes about a few tablespoon fulls. But it does last a long time. I store it in a tiny glass jar with a tight fitting lid. In fact the lib is so tight that when I open it there is a whiff of all wonderful spices seducing my nose !!!

Cardamom pods 1 tbsp
Cloves 2 tbsp
Cinnamon 2 tbsp
Cumin 1 tsp
Pepper corns 1/2 tbsp
Star Anaise 1
Maratha Moggu 1

  • Heat a small pan. Toast the cardamom pods till fragrant. Set aside to cool
  • Toast all the other spices one by one till fragrant. Set aside to cool.
  • Shell the cardamom and separate the seeds. Discard the shells.
  • Combine all the spices in a coffee blender and blend till the mixture resembles the texture of fine sooji. I prefer mine to be on the coarse, Somehow when the spices are ground very fine, they somehow tend to loose their aroma.
Store it in a small jar with a tight fitting lid.


Sanghi said...

Good masala smitha.. Was very useful! Try participating in my FIL-Milk event!

Unknown said...

Homemade Garam Masala always the best.

Lakshmi said...

Home made fresh masalas are always best! thanks for the recipe ri..

Hb said...

I always plan to do this but laziness rules over me!I should make one of these days.

Pavithra Elangovan said...

Mmmmmmmmmmmmm good masala.. tastes great if it is home made.

Unknown said...

wow.. home made masala always great ..

Kannada Cuisine said...

@ Sanghi.. Trying to conjure up something savory with Milk.. but looks like it is gonna be difficult :)

@Lakshmi Pavithra, Srikar's and LG, I believe it is the best!!

@My exp.... Yep it used to be the case with me till I realised how easy it was and how long it lasts :)

Recipeswap said...

all my fav spices are in there.Will try.

Savi-Ruchi said...

home made spice powders make dishes more yummy. Thanks for this simple garam masala recipe.

Anonymous said...

Pl suggest substitute foe Marathi moggu.

Kannada Cuisine said...

Hi there,

I really not sure if there are substitutes for Marathi Moggu.. One option is to omit it altogether..

Gane said...

Masala are the ones that gives tastes to the food that we prepare. Thanks for stressing the importance of same in this article. It's my pleasure to read this part and bookmarked it as well.
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