Homemade Masala

Homemade Masala

Spice mixes or masala(s) have a great significance in Indian cooking. These are indispensable for the dishes. Some become a part of the ingredients of the recipe, some are sprinkled at the time of finishing and some are used both ways. I would always get readymade spice mixes. However, one fine day, for the blog, I thought of making a spice mix in my kitchen. I made it, I used it and I loved it. There is hell of a difference in the homemade and readymade spice mixes, mark my words. Ever since then I have been making the spices mixes at home. My mother prepares all the basic spices for me such as red chili powder, dry mango powder, turmeric powder and so on. And I prepare all the spices mixes at home. So basically no store-bought spices in my kitchen! I have whole spices or homemade spices or homemade masala spice mixes.

Why make masala at home?

  • It is pretty simple to make Indian spice mixes at home. With correct recipe in hand, a homemade masala is all about collecting, measuring, roasting and grinding the spices.
  • Homemade spice mixes are adulteration free. We all know the readymade masalas are often corrupted by adding sand, small stones, artificial colors, chalk powder etc. At times even chemicals are added which might prove hazardous to health.
  • Homemade spices are much more flavorful than the readymade ones. You have to try it to believe it. Next time when you make pav bhaji, use homemade pav bhaji masala and see the difference for yourself.
  • If made at home, spice mixes or masalas can be customized. For example, in my chai masala, I like more black peppercorns, so I make it accordingly. If you like more of cinnamon, you can increase its quantity.
  • Homemade masala are much more hygienic. Certainly, a mom will be more careful and hygienic than a factory guy.
  • Readymade spices come with a pretty long shelf life. Preservatives are added in the masalas to ensure they last longer. At home you can make smaller batches and enjoy the freshness of flavors, getting rid of all the preservatives. I make a small batch of fresh sambar masala each time. And I love its flavor.

What things should be kept in mind while making masala or spice mixes at home?

  • Select good quality of whole spices which have a long shelf life. The final product is only as good as the ingredients used. Make sure to use the best of spices. We won’t be adding any preservatives to lengthen the shelf life of the spice mixes. Therefore it is important that our ingredients have a long shelf life.
  • Clean the ingredients properly. Make sure to check the ingredients well before use. They should be fresh and free of any molds, insects or small stones etc.
  • Most of the recipes for homemade spices mix call for dry roasting the ingredients. This step not only enhances the flavors of the spices used but also makes them crisp, making the grinding easier.
  • It is equally important to store the prepared homemade masalas properly. Masalas should be packed in an airtight container or zip lock bags and kept away from moisture etc.
  • While using the homemade spices for the first time, use a small quantity, to get the idea. Thereafter add as much required.
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Author’s Name

Vini

Hi! I am CA Vini Mehta. A Chartered Accountant by profession, a food blogger by passion! First of all, I would like to thank you for stopping by at Viniscookbook, I hope you have a good time. Here, yo...u will find the recipes which have been tried, at times re-tried in my kitchen and relished on the dining table. I am mother of two kids and the wife of a person with a high and selective taste sense, so basically anything, before finding its place on the blog, has many levels to cross and clear. This journey started a couple of years back. Before that I was making the most usual kind of food. The only experiment used to be asking my mother how to make something new or different☺. Then, one day, I tried a recipe for butter cookies. And they did not get to go in the container as they were over before I could store them. That day I was introduced to the joy of experimenting with recipes. And I loved everything else that followed especially garnishing and photographing food. I am still not well versed with the photography dos and don’ts but I love to experiment and learn, be it photography or cooking. Hope you too enjoy this journey as much as I do☺! Stay healthy, stay tuned!.