Spices are the heart and soul of Indian cooking. They make food more delicious, flavorful, and fragrant. Spices have many health benefits too. The most popular Indian spices are discussed in this article with their uses and benefits.
Turmeric is a rhizome, a root-like part of a plant that grows under the ground. It has been used in India and other Asian countries for thousands of years. Turmeric gives curry its bright color and spicy flavor. It also has antioxidant properties that may help to prevent cancer or heart disease.
Turmeric contains curcumin, which is believed responsible for many of turmeric’s medicinal actions in the body. Curcumin has anti-inflammatory properties that can help relieve pain caused by arthritis or rheumatoid arthritis, according to Harvard Medical School (HMS).
Asafoetida is a spice made from the dried sap of a giant fennel plant. It’s used in Indian cooking, particularly in vegetarian dishes. You may also be interested to know that it’s also used in medicines, perfumes, and incense!
Cumin is a popular spice that gives food a warm, bitter and pungent flavor. It is mostly used in Indian, Middle Eastern, and Mexican cuisines. Cumin seeds are antiseptic, antispasmodic, and digestive stimulants that help to relieve indigestion. It also has anti-inflammatory properties, which makes it useful in treating pain from arthritis.
Kasoori methi, also known as fenugreek seeds, are bitter in taste and used to enhance dishes’ flavor. They’re also a common ingredient in Indian cooking.
Kasoori methi can be used to treat indigestion and constipation. Because of its anti-inflammatory properties, it’s believed that kasoori methi can help reduce heartburn and bloating by breaking down proteins into smaller compounds.
Cinnamon is a sweet-smelling spice with a warm, pungent flavor. It’s made from the bark of an evergreen tree and is native to Sri Lanka and India. The spice is used in many ways, from flavoring baked goods to making mulled wine. You can use cinnamon to flavor chocolate or apple pies, but it also does well in savory dishes like braised pork belly or lamb shanks!
Cardamom is used in cooking, baking, and medicine. It is the world’s third most expensive spice. The prices of cardamom vary according to the quality of the cardamom. In India, it is commonly used in tea or coffee with milk or sugar and also for making delicious desserts like Gulab Jamun (Indian sweet balls soaked in rose-flavored syrup).
Garlic is one of the most popular spices in Indian cuisine, and it is no wonder why: It has many health benefits. Garlic is a powerful antioxidant, which means that it can help prevent and slow down the aging process. Garlic contains vitamins and minerals like selenium, manganese, potassium, copper, zinc, and Vitamin B6 (pyridoxine).
Fenugreek leaves are used in curries, pickles, dals, and soups. They also make a great tea that can help with digestion and boost your immune system. The leaves have a bitter taste and smell somewhat like maple syrup. Fenugreek should be added to dishes at the end of cooking because if it’s cooked for too long, it becomes bitter and loses its nutritional value.
Red chilies are a staple and very popular ingredient in Indian cooking; they can be found on nearly every kitchen shelf. They’re used to add a spicy flavor to food and color.
As you can see, Indian spices are important to any kitchen. They add flavor and depth, plus they’re good for you! If you’re looking for new spice combinations, try a bit of cumin and garlic on your next chicken dish or a teaspoon of cinnamon mixed into your morning latte.