A lot of Indian dishes starts with whole spices tempered in hot oil and ends with a sprinkle of Garam Masala. Making Garam Masala at home is easy and a homemade garam masala is the key to any flavorful Indian curry.
What is Garam Masala?
It is an Indian spice blend that is very commonly used in Indian cooking. All the warm spices get toasted and then cooled down before you grind it. It brings a warm flavor to your dish and is said to also increase metabolism.
Is there one variety of Garam Masala?
NO! Most household will prepare garam masala at home and oven it gets their own twist based on what whole spices they have or like to use.
I grew up mostly enjoying Bengali Gorom Moshla which used just three whole spices. You can find the recipe in this link.
Just how one dish can be prepared in several different ways in different regions of India, so are our spices and spice mixes.
Taste and Flavor of Garam Masala
It’s warm, floral, hint of sweetness from mace flower and cinnamon, and mild heat from dry red chili and black pepper.
The whole spices I used for this masala recipe
- Cumin Seeds
- Coriander Seeds
- Cinnamon Sticks
- Green Cardamom and Black Cardamom
- Mace flower
- Bay leaf
- Black Pepper
- Dry red chili
- Star Anise
It is always a good idea to prepare spice mixes in small batches. With time, and longer shelf life, the aroma starts to vanish.
Also don’t prepare garam masala using powdered spice mixes. You need to roast these whole spices and then grind it to powder.
Indian Masala Dubba
Spices are very important to us Indians and we are very particular not only about the spices we use but also get emotional about our ‘masala dubba’ (Spice container).
The most common Masala Dubba you will find in a steel round air tight container with 7 small containers inside it to hold the spices.
Today I want to talk a little bit about Gitadini Masala Dubba. I have been using this Masala Dubba for 2 years now. It’s such an amazing product and I love the fun yin yang design.
Little bit about Gitadini Masala Dubba:
The containers may look a little small to you at first, but they hold the exact same quantity than your regular steel Masala Dubba does. It is airtight and has 12 containers to store your regular spices along with two measuring spoons.
What I like the most is that, it’s divided into two separate dubbas which makes it easy to either place it next to each other or one on top of another.
Simultaneously you can also use these two containers for two different storage purposes.
- ¼ cup Cumin Seeds
- ¼ cup Coriander Seeds
- 2 Cinnamon Sticks
- 2 tablespoons Green Cardamom
- 2 Mace flower
- 3 small Bay leaf
- 2 Black Cardamom
- 1 teaspoon Black Pepper
- 2 to 3 Dry red chili (I used Kashmiri dry red chili)
- 2 Star Anise
- In a pan dry roast all the spices just until you hear the sizzling sound and the aroma starts to release.
- Let the roasted whole spice cool down completely
- Then using a dry spice grinder or a coffee grinder, grind it to powdered.
- Store in your choice of air tight container or masala dubba.