What is garam masala?
Part of our Ultimate Guide to World Cuisine. Click to see more answers to your questions.
Garam masala is a blend of ground spices common in Indian, Pakistani, and other South Asian cuisines. The name itself translates to “hot spices” in Hindi, although the “hot” refers more to the intensity and richness of the flavors rather than heat or spiciness.
What spices are in garam masala?
The exact recipe can vary greatly by region, family tradition, and personal taste, but common ingredients often include:
- Black pepper
These spices are typically toasted to bring out their full flavors and then ground into a powder. The result is a potent spice blend that’s used to flavor a variety of dishes.
Generally, garam masala is added towards the end of cooking or even just before serving, as excessive heat can lead to loss of flavor. It should also be stored in a cool, dry place and used within a few months for the best taste.
What can you cook with garam masala?
Garam masala is incredibly versatile and can be used in many ways:
You can sprinkle garam masala on meats, tofu, or veggies before roasting or grilling. Or add garam masala to enhance the flavor of lentil soups, stews, or curry dishes. Sprinkle some garam masala into your rice or biryani for a delicious twist. Combine garam masala with yogurt and marinate chicken or fish for a richly flavored dish.
Try our recipe for Garam Masala Red Lentil Toast.