I highly recommend you make your own garam masala! It's easy, quick and will give your recipes that authentic restaurant taste and flavour that's hard to replicate at home.
Note: When you make your own blends, I usually advise using whole spices, sometimes this is not practical. In these cases it's perfectly fine to use ground powders.
Literally translated garam means "hot" and masala means "spices" and the amount of ingredients can range from as little as five or six up to fifteen plus spices!
Ingredients: (makes about 4-5 tbsp)
10 dried bay leaves
15 green cardamom pods
3 tbsp coriander seeds (cilantro seeds)
2 tbsp cumin seeds
1½ tbsp black peppercorns
2 inch stick of cinnamon
tbsp = tablespoon
tsp = teaspoon
Store in an airtight jar out of direct sunlight and use within 6 months.
For more flavour, you can lightly toast the whole ingredients before grinding. Click here for "step-by-step" info and photos on this.
Here's a slideshow of how I made this mix...
This blend is often added towards the end of cooking to bring out the flavours, or sprinkled over the finished dish.
And there are many variations, some basic others a bit more complicated. But all, when freshly made, will give your food that extra wow factor! Click for another garam masala recipe.
Though usually associated with curries, this blend works well with many other foods. Homemade lentil soups are just not the same without a teaspoon or two of this masala blend. I also often add some to good old baked beans for a really zingy kick!
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