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Garam Masala: Cornerstone Rub of India

"While strict Hindus do not eat beef, Muslims avoid pork, for example. One common denominator in Indian cooking is the imaginative use of spices." Madhur Jaffrey

Curry and Garam Masala are the traditional classic Indian spice blends. On their own, they are potent. On food, they are seductive. Garam Masala finds itself onto foods, especially chicken, marinades, salad dressings, stir fries, and even baking in breads and sweets. But it is most often used as a final sprinkling before serving, a sort of dry sauce.

Garam Masala has a complexity from sweet, pungent, spicy hot, and savory. There is no single recipe for either blend. They vary region to region, family to family. Some add expensive saffron, others mace. Here is my recipe. It includes cardamom seeds. They are hard to find, but I consider their heady citrus aromas essential.

Makes.

Takes.

Ingredients

2 tablespoons coriander seeds

1 tablespoon cardamom seeds

1 tablespoon cumin seeds

1 tablespoon black peppercorns

1 teaspoon powdered ginger

2" cinnamon stick, broken into bits

1 teaspoon whole cloves

1 teaspoon powdered nutmeg

1 teaspoon fennel seeds

2 bay leaf

Method

1) Warm a frying pan over medium heat and add the ingredients. Let them sit for a minute or two, and then stir. Continue to gently toast things until they start to brown and get fragrant. This process, called blooming, cooks everything and pulls the oils to the surface.

2) Dump everything into a grinder. You can use a blender, food processor, mortar & pestle, spice grinder, or coffee grinder. Crush into a fine powder.

3) Use immediately. If you store it in a tight jar, bloom the powder again before using.

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About this website. AmazingRibs.com is all about the science of barbecue, grilling, and outdoor cooking, with great BBQ recipes, tips on technique, science, mythbusting, and unbiased equipment reviews. Learn how to set up your grills and smokers properly, the thermodynamics of what happens when heat hits meat, and how to cook great food outdoors. There are also buying guides to hundreds of barbeque smokers, grills, accessories, and thermometers, as well as hundreds of excellent tested recipes including all the classics: Baby back ribs, pulled pork, Texas brisket, burgers, chicken, smoked turkey, lamb, steaks, chili, barbecue sauces, spice rubs, and side dishes, with the world's best all edited by Meathead Goldwyn.

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