COUNTRY:                           SOUTH AFRICA

DISH:                                     GHARUM MASALA

CONTRIBUTD BY:               Nazira Khamissa, SA IDSA Member

This is commonly used in Indian foods to add a delicious finish and providing the essential Ayurvedic sensations of sweet & savoury fragrant heat to almost any dish. A section of whole spices is dry toasted in a pan, cooled, then ground up together and stored in a tightly sealed glass bottle to preserve the intensity of flavours. Use a pinch to add a special touch to fruit platters, yoghurt, humus, eggs, spiced rice dishes while cooking, naans & breads – and, of course, curries.

1 teaspoon whole cumin / jeero
1 tablespoon coriander / whole dhana seeds ( these two add the savoury element )
2 inch piece cinnamon stick / tuj
½ teaspoon cloves ( two for the sweetness and they balance blood sugar )
3 cardamom pods / elachi ( provide fragrance , with nutmeg & mace )
1 teaspoon whole peppercorns
1-3 dried chillies to personal taste ( heat )
½ teaspoon or less fennel ( imparts a more South Indian taste & can be added separately to coconut dishes if not using here )
2 dried bay leaves ( optional )
¼ teaspoon nutmeg
Little scrape of mace


Toast everything, enjoy the aroma.
Cool before grinding in a spice grinder or coffee mill.