Mild spice mix derived from India. Made from finely ground coriander seed, cumin, turmeric, mustard, fenugreek, ginger, cardamom, cloves and chilli powder.
Curry powder is a blend of ground spices that was exported by the British in an attempt to replicate the cuisine they found in India during colonial rule. It is a somewhat distorted and inauthentic representation, as Indian cooking uses fresh pastes mixed from wet and dry ingredients rather than ready-made powders. The ingredients used in curry powder are moveable, since it is a generic term that is expected to cover the full gamut from sweet to heat. But typically recipes include chilli, coriander seeds, cumin seeds, mustard seeds and turmeric, and will be labelled mild, medium or hot. While I wouldn’t advocate using curry powder as a base for making a curry, it works well when mixed into ground meat or rissole-type creations.
- 6 parts coriander seeds (2 tablespoons)
- 3 parts cumin seeds (1 tablespoon)
- 2 parts turmeric (2 teaspoons)
- 1 part black mustard seeds (1 teaspoon)
- 1 part fenugreek seeds (1 teaspoon)
- 1 part ground ginger (1 teaspoon)
- ½ part cardamom seeds (½ teaspoon) (break open about 12 green cardamom pods by crushing with the broad side of a heavy knife, and shake out the seeds)
- ½ part cloves (½ teaspoon)
- ¼ part cayenne pepper (¼ teaspoon)
- Heat a small, heavy-based frying pan over a medium heat. Add the whole spices and dry fry for 1 – 2 minutes, or until they release a fragrant aroma. Turn off the heat when done.
- Tip the toasted spices into a spice grinder and grind until finely ground (if you do not have a spice grinder, then use a pestle and mortar or the small bowl of a food processor).
- Combine the toasted spices with the remaining ingredients in a clean and dry jam jar / airtight container. Seal, and give the jar a good shake until all the spices are evenly mixed. Store in a cool, dark cupboard. Use within a month for full potency.