Essential Seasonings: Building A Truly Indian Spice Rack
From spicy curries to aromatic tadkas, Indian cuisine is world renowned for its collection of flavourful spices. Here, we’ll throw a spotlight on some of the most indispensable ingredients in Indian cooking, along with the benefits of these spices.
Haldi or turmeric is one of the most common spices across the country, used not only in food preparation but for medicinal purposes as well. Turmeric powder has many health benefits. Traditionally, haldi has been used to treat wounds, digestive and respiratory disorders, and many other ailments. It offers excellent antioxidant and anti-inflammatory benefits due to its curcumin content. Turmeric can aid in the management of oxidative and inflammatory conditions, metabolic syndrome, arthritis, anxiety and high lipid levels.
Dhania powder is an essential curry ingredient. Dhania or coriander seeds are high in vitamins A and C, folic acid and beta carotene. The health benefits of dhania powder are plenty. It aids digestion and has antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties. It also contains linoleic acid which is useful in treating skin conditions like dry rashes. It can help lower high blood sugar level because of its anti-hyper glycaemic properties.
It’s true that Indian’s love their spice, and any Indian pantry would be incomplete without red chilli powder and its red chilli benefits. Capsaicin is the element which gives chillies their spicy flavour while carotenoids impart that bright red colour and also have antioxidant properties. The capsaicin in red chilli benefits our metabolism. It can help increase the amount of heat your body produces, making you burn more calories per day. Carotenoids are beneficial antioxidants that can protect you from disease and enhance your immune system.
This uniquely aromatic spice mixture originated in the north of India and serves the dual purpose of adding flavour to food and keeping the body temperature up. Garam masala can also help build immunity and aids digestion. Although there are a few variants of this masala, the main ingredients are cinnamon, cardamom, cloves, mace, dhania, pepper and chilli.
Dal Tadka Masala
The simplest foods are often the best. This staple dish is prepared with onions, garlic and tomatoes. It includes a number of spices such as dhania, chilli, jeera, ginger, amchur, haldi and fennel. These spices have various nutrients and vitamins. They exhibit antimicrobial, anti-inflammatory and also help in digestive concerns. If opting for a spice blend, make sure to choose only the purest to get the benefits of spices.
Punjabi Chhole Masala
Another favourite across Indian kitchens is the classic Punjabi Chhole. This dish is prepared with a unique blend of spices including bay leaf, anardana, amchur, cloves, mint, mace, ginger and more. Many of these spices exhibit anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties as well.
Pav Bhaji Masala
The famed pav bhaji is made using a spice mix containing cinnamon, cardamom, cloves, fennel seeds, pepper, cumin, coriander seeds, chillies and dry mango powder. These ingredients have immune boosting and antioxidant properties. They also aid in digestion. Cut down the cooking time on this classic by preparing and storing a big batch of this masala or by keeping a ready mix handy.
Kitchen King Masala
Kitchen king masala is your answer to a quick, no-fuss meal. This masala offers a balanced blend of nutritional spices that can be used to flavour a vegetable curry or side dish, or even a pulao. The perfect fix for when you want to whip up a home cooked meal after a long day at work.
Is your pantry missing out on one or more of these ingredients? Running low on your favourite masala? When you’re stocking your shelves, choose Tata Sampann’s range of masalas and make the most of the benefits of spices. The ingredients are sourced for quality, packed for freshness, and will give your meals that perfect flavour every time.
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