I have a large collection of whole spices that I prefer to use when cooking, rather than store bought ground mixes. I am always worried about what has gone into these mixes, and I can always make them at home in the quantity I need, rather than buy a particular blend and only use it once. Whole spices keep longer and are really simple to turn into ground spices if that is what your recipe calls for. All you need is a frying pan and a spice grinder. I have a very basic coffee grinder which I use to grind my spices. All I do is give it a good wipe after each use. It is important that it is not used for coffee though, as I don’t want any additional flavours in my morning cuppa. As I was given a recipe which calls for Biryani mix and I turned to my ever useful Curry recipe book, and used that as inspiration to make my own spice blend. I can really recommend that you try this method as you will find you waste less and seldom have to toss out spices as they won’t lose their oomph if you buy them whole.
do you use whole spices in your kitchen?
Biryani Spice Blend
- 2 quills cinnamon, rubbed between your hands and broken in half
- 4 pods cardamom
- 5 mls cumin seeds
- 5 mls black peppercorns
- 5 mls cloves
- 4 whole star anise
- 5 mls cayenne pepper
- 5 mls ground turmeric
- 5 mls ground coriander
- In a frying pan, heat the cinnamon sticks, cardamom pods, cumin seeds, black peppercorns, cloves and star anise until you can smell the spices
- Grind them in a spice grinder until fine
- Add them to the rest of the ingredients
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