- Basic Spices:
- 1/8 cup Cloves
- 1/8 cup Coriander seeds
- 3-4 Cinnamon sticks
- 2 teaspoons Cumin seeds
- 4-5 Cardamom pods Missed it in the picture
- Some more spices you can add depending on what you have and like:
- 2 Bay Leaves
- 1/4 of whole Nutmeg
- 2 teaspoons Caraway seeds / Shah Jeera
- 3 Star Anise
- 1/8 cup Fennel seeds
- Some people also add pepper and whole chilies to their garam masala, and some don't. I like to control the heat element separately based on the dishes I am preparing
- 1 tablespoon Pepper
- 2-3 Dried whole red chillies
Method I: (Easier way, my way)
Break the bigger spices like bay leaves into smaller sizes with your hand and toast all the spices on low-medium heat in one batch stirring or tossing till the spices are warm to touch and you can smell the aroma.
Method II: (Traditional Way)
Toast the spices in a pan on low-medium heat in two batches, 1st with the smaller spices (Cloves + Coriander + cumin + cardamom + pieces of nutmeg + caraway seeds + fennel seeds ) and then with bigger spices (bay leaves + cinnamon sticks + star anise) stirring or tossing till the spices are warm and you can smell the aroma.
Move it onto a plate to cool completely. Once cooled, using a coffee grinder or mixer, grind into a fine mixture. Store in an airtight container.
Do not try to speed up the process by increasing the heat. It wont take long for the spices to burn.
Do not worry about the perfect measurements. A little here and there is completely fine.
To preserve the aroma and freshness make this in small batches. All you need in one teaspoon per curry which serves around 4 people.
Some curries require this mix to be added to oil during the initial sauteing while others require it to be sprinkled on top at the end of cooking.
Garam masala is mainly used in meat preparation. It also tastes good with roasted vegetables.
I make enough to last me about 2 months in one batch (about 3/4 cup).