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Indian Cooking Ingredients

Indian cuisine is known to be one of the most diverse and delicious cuisines in the world. Indian meals are known for having intense spices rich in aroma and taste. It is easy to know if a meal originated from India with its unique Indian spicy aroma and flavor. Do you know that Indians have thousands of spice blends to choose from to blend in their meals? Spices are simply the essence of every Indian meal. Indian cooks are judged and rated based on their skills in blending seeds, powders and pastes to achieve familiar or exotic warmth, and pungency that is distinctly Indian.

The most important spices in Indian cooking are said to be chili pepper, black mustard seed, ginger, coriander, fenugreek and asafetida or hing. The most common main portions of Indian cooking are rice, bean dishes, and atta, which is a special type of whole-wheat flour. Indian meals can be so elaborate that they take a day to prepare or can be very simple and cooked in minutes. Most of the Indian home-style dishes, however, require the least effort and use very little oil.

Indian spices are best used within three months of purchase; after that time, it loses its pungency and bite. It is advisable to buy whole spices rather than powders, for whole spices maintain the freshness longer and ensure better flavor. Every region in India has its own signature spices and food ingredients as well. For instance, dishes in North India are often cooked in dry spice, while dishes in South India tend to incorporate rice, coconut and curry leaves in all of their dishes and use more wet spice pastes.

A reminder to chilly lovers who cannot tolerate maximum heat: remove the seeds and white pit before you use the chilies in the dishes. This lessens the chili’s pungency and heat.

For more about Indian ingredients please click on one of the links below.

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