Garam masala is a preblended spice mixture that you can find in either supermarkets, natural food stores, or Indian markets. It is widely used in Indian, Nepalese, and other Asian cuisines. It is made of cardamom, cloves, mace, cinnamon, cumin, fennel, black peppercorns, and fenugreek.
This easy-to-make spice blend is the heart of most Indian dishes. A combination of different spices, it probably has as many recipes as there are families in India! Here is a basic one. Once you get a feel for the taste it gives your cooking, experiment and alter it to suit your needs.
Garam masala is best made fresh just before you begin cooking, but if you haven’t got the patience (like me!), make a batch ahead and store for several months in an air-tight container in a cool, dark place.
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Garam Masala which literally means hot (Garam) spice (Masala) is not an spice in itself. It is a spice blend used throughout India and the rest of the Indian Subcontinent.
This special blend of spice is used in a small quantity at the end of cooking or fried in the beginning of cooking to add a subtle flavor to the cooked dish. Please note, garam masala must be added in small quantities, or else it will overpower the dish.