Heart Of The House

Garam Masala

Garam Masala

(makes 1/3 cup)

Garam Masala can be purchased at the store but you can easily make it at home and you know exactly what is in it!  (Garam means “hot or heating” and  Marsala means “spice blend“).  It is usually added near the end of cooking to give a last minute touch of flavour.  There are many different blends and recipes.  This recipe is from one of my favourite cookbooks “Mangoes & Curry LeavesCulinary Travels Through The Great Sub-Continent”.


1 tbs black peppercorns

1/4 cup coriander seeds

1 tsp seeds from green cardamom pods

1/2 tsp whole cloves

1 piece cinnamon stick, 1″ long


Heat a medium cast-iron skillet over medium heat.  Place peppercorns in the skillet and dry roast, stirring frequently with a wooden spoon, until aromatic (about 3-4 minutes).  Turn out into a medium bowl.

Repeat with the remaining ingredients, roasting them one ingredient at a time and stirring to prevent burning.

Grind the spices to a powder in a mortar and pestle or in a spice/coffee grinder.

Let the powder cool completely, transfer to a glass jar and seal tightly and store in a cool, dark place.

Note:  It is best to make small quantity and use within 2 months, after which it will starts to lose its flavour.

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