Happy Monday, Karma Eats readers!
Before we move any further with the recipes, let’s start with a brief overview of the basic spices you will want to have on hand. To me, the most intimidating part of making Indian food is trying to decipher these spices. What are they? What are they used for? Why are there so many of them?!
I promise you, once you have everything in your pantry, the recipes become super simple. And hopefully some of these questions will be answered very soon.
So let’s begin with Spices 101!
Left: Garam masala. This can be found at your local Asian or Indian store, or on Amazon. Or if you have an international-friendly store such as Fiesta (for the Texans), the international section carries this.
Right: Cumin seeds. This can be found at your local Asian or Indian store. Sometimes it can be found in the international section of the regular grocery store as well. Or Amazon.
Left: Turmeric. This is ground turmeric. If you are lucky, you may be able to find this in the international section of a regular grocery store. Otherwise, it can be found at your local Asian or Indian store or on Amazon.
Right: Asafoetida (or hing in Hindi – which, strangely, is much easier to pronounce) is a very important spice in Indian food. It has a ton of health benefits. The only unfortunate part about this spice is that it is a bit difficult to find. You can find it at your local Asian or Indian grocery store. Google may be able to help you as well.
Left: ground cumin. I know what you are thinking. Why do you need cumin seeds and ground cumin? Because cumin makes multiple appearances in Indian dishes sometimes. It is also very flavorful and good for digestion. The good news is that cumin powder can typically be found in a regular grocery store, any Asian or Indian grocery store, or on Amazon.
Right: curry powder. This is not a necessity, since this particular bag of curry powder that I have contains a combination of many of the spices mentioned here. However, it is nice to have on hand to quickly spice up a dish. This can be found at a store such as Fiesta (again for the Texans), or at an Asian or Indian grocery store.
Right: red chili powder. This stuff is spicy. This can typically be found at any regular grocery store, and definitely at a local Asian or Indian store. It is also on Amazon.
Left: Cumin-corriander powder. Again with the cumin! This can be found in any Asian or Indian grocery store. And on Amazon.
Right: mustard seeds. These can be found in any Asian or Indian store, or at an international-friendly store such as Fiesta.
That is all for today – hopefully this helps you stock up your pantry for all of the Indian food to follow!