Fresh Clips: Curry Spices

Gather some curry spices to make a delicious spice blend from scratch and add some sweet (or spicy) pizzazz to your meals.

| December/January 2012

Curry powder is a tantalizing mixture of finely ground spices. It may contain as little as six curry spices or as many as 20 or more, with flavors ranging from mild and savory to slightly spicy and sweet, and even fiery hot. Each region has its own distinctive taste. Customize the heat and flavor of the curry by making your own spice blend from scratch.

Curry Spices 

Commonly used curry spices are chile, cumin, coriander, garlic, ginger and turmeric, which gives curry its distinctive yellow color. Other spices can include black pepper, cardamom, cinnamon, cloves, fenugreek seeds, mustard and most any other spice. Cinnamon helps sweeten the blend, while chile, black pepper and mustard turn up the heat.

Tips for Making a Spice Blend 

To make curry powder, dry-toast whole spices over medium heat in a nonstick or heavy-based pan, stirring constantly for two to three minutes or until the spices give off a rich aroma. Don’t overcook, as burning may make the spices bitter.

Allow the spices to cool, then crush in a coffee or spice grinder, or with a mortar and pestle.

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