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How to Make the Aromatic Indian Garam Masala Powder at Home : Easy Steps With Pictures!
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The Magical Indian Curry Powder or The Garam Masala mixture
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- When I was a little girl and my mother used to talk about Garam masala, in cooking recipes, I thought some masalas have to be heated and added to a particular recipe.
It was only when I grew up and started cooking myself, then I realized, what exactly is Garam masala..
- There is nothing like home ground Garam Masala powder, which gives the best Aroma and colour to your recipes.
- Although it is easily available in markets, the best ones are those, which are freshly ground at home.
What is Garam masala?
'Garam' means hot and 'Masala' means spices. So Garam masala, in fact means, Hot Spices. The spices, which provide Heat and Warmth within your body. It is particularly very essential to consume Garam masala in winters.
The Garam Masala has many other health benefits, besides keeping you warm in winters.
Components of the Indian Garam Masala:
- Garam Masala can be easily found in retail stores or any Grocery shop, in nice 100 gram. or 200 gram. packets.
- But it is best, when it is freshly grounded, therefore this hub, to give an idea of how it can be very easily prepared at home.
- Garam Masala or the magical Indian curry masala, is in fact a combination or a blend of various spices.
- There is no hard and fast rule, as regards to the selection of spices or even the quantity, thereof. It is a matter of personal choice.
- Normally, five or six Spices combination is everyone' s favourite when they are preparing the mixture at home.
- The basic and universal choice of spices are Black Cardamom, Green Cardamom, Cinnamon, Cloves, Black Pepper, Black and White Cumin seeds.
Simple Steps To Prepare The Indian Garam Masala:
1. First of all, take equal quantities, say one tablespoonful each, for ordinary purposes, of Black and White Cumin seeds, Cloves, Black and White Cardamoms, Black Pepper, Cinnamon sticks.
If you want to prepare a larger amount, it can be done by properly storing it at room temperature.
Usually you can prepare as much as they can last for a month, depending upon how frequently you use these in your recipes.
2. Slightly roast, about 30 to 40 seconds, not more than a minute, on a flat pan, and remove from heat. This is to release the Aroma of the spices.
3. Let the spices cool and then grind in the dry Grinder of your Food Processor.
4. If you want to store for future use, make sure that you use airtight containers to store the Garam Masala, that is completely dry and clean.
5. Wipe the bottle with a tissue paper and close the lid properly, as the Masala will lose its Aroma, if the lid is not closed.
6. Store the bottled masala away from direct Sunlight or heat and do not bring a wet spoon in contact, while using the mixture in cooking.
How to store the Indian Spices/ Garam Masala?
- Store the spices at dry places/ shelves.
- Store the spices at cool places, away from direct Sunlight.
- Store the spices in glass containers, so that you can easily locate them.
- Do not grind a large quantity at one time. Grind only small amount that may last for a week or fortnight.
- The ground spices might lose their aroma if it is exposed frequently.
- Add the ground spices when you have almost finished cooking your recipe.
- The spices will lose its aroma if overcooked/ boiled/ fried.
The benefits of the some of the components of Garam Masala:
Cinnamon gives relief from Acidity and warmth to the body.
It is very beneficial for the ailments related to digestion.
It helps to fight infections and is very effective in treating Gynaecological problems.
It can be used to treat swelling in the mouth or mouth ulcers.
Black and Green Cardamom:
These wonder spices are good for treating Cough or Bile related ailments.
These are digestive and effective in Urine related problems, such as burning sensation.
The cardamoms have wonderful Aroma and are effective in treating Nausea as well.
These are good in treating Heart burn or restlessness.
Cloves are very beneficial in treating Indigestion or Nausea.
Minor skin infections, such as blemishes and spots can be effectively treated by Cloves.
This is again good for Digestion and destroys Toxins from our digestive system.
It provides heat and energy to our body and is effective in treating pain in joints, headache, toothache etc.
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Do you prepare Garam Masala at home?
How To Use Garam Masala in a recipe
Garam Masala or the magical Indian curry powder is used to enhance the Aroma and texture of various delicacies of vegetarian and non vegetarian items and also to give the colour, true to Indian Cuisine.
- It is added to the recipe, when the recipe is almost done. In other words, it is not to be cooked too much within the recipe, as it may lose its Aroma or that definite taste, for which it is identified.
- When storing, make sure to keep the Spice mixture in airtight containers, away from direct Sunlight or heat.
- Murg Musullum, Rogan Josh, Chicken or Mutton curry, Kabli Chana, Paneer Kadhai are some of the rich recipes, which we can not imagine without Garam Masala.
- Garam Masala is also added in Pakoras, Soups, Daal, Vegetarian or Non Vegetarian Biryanis etc.
- As I said earlier in different regions of India, there are additions of one or more spices to this spice mix.
- Aniseeds, Nutmeg, Coriander seeds, Bay leaf are some of the other favourite add ons, but basically the above components are good enough to prepare an ideal Garam Masala mixture, for regular day to day cooking.
These spice mixtures are widely used not only in India, but other Asian nations as well. But the procedure of adding them in a particular recipe may vary from person to person and from place to place.
© Chitrangada Sharan 14th Jan. 2014
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Buying and storing spices, source: You tube
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