All purpose garam masala

Garam Masala

We all know by now that Indians love their spices. Garam Masala is a blend of spices essential for successful Indian cooking. In Hindi the word Garam means hot and Masala means blend of spices. Households, chefs and regions oftentimes make their own distinct versions by roasting and grinding various spice combinations.

A crucial mistake made by people is running of to a local supermarket grabbing a jar/bag of readymade Garam Masala. Roasting and grinding your own blends will make night and day in difference.
Commercial spice blend factories tend to use low quality spices in order to keep the production costs down and increase the profits.

Before I started experimenting with my own Masala Blends I always had a feeling that my homemade curries were lacking something. Even if they could be quite tasty it needed something of that “little extra”.

After watching a childhood friend’s mother preparing Indian food and asking her some questions about what my curries could possibly lack, I could see her eyes looking at me over a pair of small glasses. About 30 seconds later she popped out an answer with a typical Indian accent: “You have to make your own Garam Masala!”

Ever since that moment I never looked back at readymade blends (Unless it’s made from high quality spices in a trusted environment).

The version of Garam Masala I will share with you is a fragrant and powerful all purpose seasoning. A little pinch drizzled into a curry right before serving goes a long way.

Keep the spice blend in a airtight container for no longer than 6 months. But it’s even better to spend it as quickly as possible.


All purpose Garam Masala

Prep Time: 3-5 min

Cook Time: 1 min + cooling

Total Time: 20-30 min


4 tablespoons coriander seeds
4 tablespoons cumin seeds
2 inch or 5cm piece of broken up cinnamon stick
1 teaspoon of cloves
1 tablespoon green cardamom pods
1 tablespoon black pepper corns


Heat up a frying pan on medium heat. Add in all the ingredients except cumin seeds and roast while occasionally stirring for about 30 seconds or until aromatic. Add in the cumin seeds and roast for another 30 seconds. Turn off the heat, spread the spice mixture onto a plate and allow them to cool down. Put the spices into an electric coffee or spice grinder and make into a fine powder. If the grinder is small you might need to do it in batches.

Voila! Homemade flavorful garam masala is ready



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