Indian Spices that Help You in Weight Loss

How Eating Enhances Weight Gain?

Eating fried food items and starch rich food varieties creates the sense to eat more and more. Thus frequent eating and over eating habits enhances weight gain in a short period of time.

List of Spice Varieties that has Weight Management Capacity

Though spice varieties are added to induce flavor and taste to food, they are also rich in medicinal values. Hence, in earlier days more fatty food products like meat, sweets and other fat rich food products were prepared by adding spice varieties that contained fat burning and highly digesting capacities.

Turmeric – To Reduce Inflammation

Stomach inflammation or intestinal inflammation enhances weight gain and consuming turmeric in terms of adding a small quantity in cooking will reduce the inflammation to a great extent. Similarly, turmeric powder also has the capacity to slow down bad cholesterol, prevents blood clot in blood vessels, and indirectly helps prevent heart problems.

Include Cardamom in Food and Increase Metabolic Rate

Cardamom has the capacity to increase metabolism in terms of helping the body to burn excess fat. In Indian food preparations, Cardamom remains one of the prime ingredients and it is widely used in food items that contain fat, oil and excess starch.

Experience Blood Sugar Control with Cinnamon

Cinnamon is the most sensuous spice of all next to cardamom. It has spectacular medicinal values and it helps in burning fat and controlling blood sugar levels to normal. It also supports your digestive system to control frequent hunger thus paving way for weight loss.

Coriander Seeds and Powder -The Most Soothing Spice that Controls Inflammation

Coriander is either available in processed form or as whole seeds which people grind and use in food preparation. It is added to obtain viscosity in gravy food preparations and it remains a soothing ingredient as it will not create inflammation which certain spices like green chilli which enhances inflammation. Hence, Coriander helps in preventing weight gain.

Cumin Seeds for Digestion

Cumin seeds are also used in powder and full seed form in cooking. It contains good medicinal value and was used as a digestion enhancer in earlier days. In India, syrup extracted from boiling cumin seeds in water is given to elders and children to get relief from digestion problems. Fried food products are dangerous factors that enhance weight gain and cumin helps in easy digestion and reduce fat accumulation.

Getting Indian Spices Pure and Original

To check out how spices react in reducing weight gain and manage good health it is recommended that consumers should buy pure and high grade indian spices from genuine suppliers.

Ramdev Food-A Name Known for Purity and Honesty

Ramdev Food Products Pvt. Ltd is a reputed supplier of wide range of Indian spice varieties. We also supply mixed masala made from first quality Indian spice ingredients. Our products are available in processed form including Coriander powder, Kashmiri Chilli powder, Cumin Seeds, Turmeric Powder and many more.

Conclusion

Spices are rich in flavor and medicinal values. There are many spice varieties that help reducing weight gain and manage good health.

The Spices used in Preparing Cosmetics

Spice Varieties and Multiplicity of usages

Spices are exclusive range of consumable products extracted from natural resources including variety of plants, herbs, etc. Each spice variety bears unique taste, smell and texture and when they are applied mostly in food preparation. However, cosmetic industry also found to have variety of spice usages.

Industrial Application of Spices

Food industry is the major consumer of spices. The properties of spices differ widely and each variety holds exclusive smell and purpose. Hence, starting from baked products, to making readymade masala items, ice cream and processed food, etc the requirement of spices is very well matched.

Spices used in Cosmetic Industry

Apart from food and medical industry next comes the cosmetic industry which remains one of the areas where specific spices are chosen and extracts from these pleasant smelling ingredients are processed and applied in the preparation of skin care and perfumes.

Forms of Extractions from spices that are applied in beatification aspects

Oil extracted from variety of spices are found to posses impulsive components however, they also expose the properties of fragrance and flavor. The process of steam distillation is generally applied to extract the specific aroma and oil from spice varieties. These by-products are then applied in the preparation of cosmetics, perfumes, toothpastes, etc.

Perfumes made from Spice Oils are safe to use

Among the beauty products, perfumes remain a prominent requirement for consumers. Perfumes made from chemicals may be harmful when used for long term.  On the other hand, fragrance or body spray made of spice oil is safe to use as the ingredients are naturally available and no artificial fragrance is added to them.

Spice Varieties from which oil is extracted

Cardamom, clove, ginger, vanilla, are some of the flavors most commonly used in perfume production. These spice varieties contain rich natural flavor and enhance the existing properties of supportive ingredients thus making the final product remain perfect in natural fragrance.

Spices used in Preparing Cosmetics

Popularity of Indian Spices in Global Market

When it comes to Pure Spices, India leads the role in supplying genuine spice varieties to the global market. The climatic condition and the different land forms make it favorable for Indian farmers to grow more spice varieties in India and export to other countries as well, meeting the ever increasing demand for Indian spices in the world market.

Homemade Cosmetics from Indian Spices

Homemade remedies are common in Indian Tradition and earlier before the introduction of processed cosmetic products, majority of Indian women prepared cosmetic products from the available spice range. For example, turmeric is a popular spice variety that is applied for skin care, healing of wounds, pimple cure, etc. Similarly, cloves were also applied for beauty care aspects.

Where to get Genuine Spices?

Duplicated and adulterated spices also are distributed in the market. However, getting pure spice ingredients will have great benefit when it is applied.

Solution: Premium Spices from Ramdev

Ramdev Food Products Pvt. Ltd is a pioneer in offering wide range of Indian spice varieties – turmeric, cloves, pepper, coriander, chilli, etc. We also supply spices which can be used for different industrial applications. We export pure spice products from India to different parts of the world and consumers can obtain genuine spices – http://india.ramdevfood.com/products/premium-spices.html from us.

Conclusion

Spices are generally used in the food and pharmaceutical industries. But the presence of spice oil which can be obtained only by extraction process makes it eligible for the cosmetic industry as well.

Indian Spices for Healthy Heart

To stay healthy man has turned to natural remedies since generations. ‘Grand-mother’s remedies’ are popular in every household even today. You get upset stomach, and your mother gives you a concoction of ‘ajwain’ or mint or some other herbs and spices.

Indian spices are known for their health benefits. Different spices are beneficial to us in different ways.

Spices for Healthy Heart

We often talk about good cholesterol and bad cholesterol. Bad cholesterol or Low Density Lipoproteins (LDL) is the major cause of blockage in arteries. Good cholesterol or the High Density Lipoproteins (HDL) aid in removing LDL from the blood stream and thus prevent blockage in the arteries, which is the main cause of heart diseases.

Cinnamon

Cinnamon is known to decrease triglycerides, and cholesterol. The arteries in the heart and in the body get blocked due to high levels of cholesterol. A quarter or half a spoon of cinnamon taken daily can reduce triglycerides, and cholesterol by 12 to 30 percent in our body.

Cinnamon even prevents blood clots and contains anti-oxidants. As it is rich in fibre, it also helps to reduce heartburn.

Cinnamon taken regularly reduces fat in the blood vessels, thus reducing weight of the body. Fat around your belly is responsible for heart diseases and cinnamon helps to reduce that too.

Cloves

Cloves contain anti-oxidants and they have anti-inflammatory properties which protect you from heart diseases.

Coriander

Coriander has anti-oxidant properties and is known to reduce cholesterol and thus prevent heart diseases. The two main compounds of coriander seeds, linaloon and decanoic acid, are known to lower cholesterol and blood sugar levels. Many studies have shown that coriander lowers bad cholesterol and increases good cholesterol.

People suffering from heart disease can soak a tea spoon of coriander seeds overnight and have them in the morning.

Turmeric

Turmeric is known as the ‘golden spice’ due to its many health benefits and medicinal properties. The Curcumin found in turmeric has anti-oxidant, anti-inflammatory, anti-clotting and anti-proliferative properties. It lowers cholesterol level in the blood and prevents cardiovascular problems. It also prevents the formation of blood clots in the body and improves blood circulation.

One spoon of turmeric powder taken daily in warm milk helps to prevent heart diseases.

Indian Spices for Healthy Heart

Black Pepper

A number of studies conducted have confirmed that black pepper helps to lower cholesterol and aids in the recuperation post heart attack.

Fenugreek seeds

Fenugreek seeds are known to reduce the levels of cholesterol and triglycerides. It has the property to reduce triglycerides, cholesterol, and raises the levels of good cholesterol.

Nutmeg

Eugenol, a compound found in nutmeg, is beneficial to the heart. 

Ginger

Ginger contains bioactive compounds like gingerol which helps in relaxing blood vessels, stimulating the flow of the blood, and relieving pain. It is helpful to people suffering from heart ailments due to its anti-inflammatory and anti-clotting properties. It also helps to lower cholesterol.

Garlic

Garlic contains allicin, a sulfur compound which gives garlic its strong smell and all the medicinal benefits. If eaten everyday it is known to reduce the risk of heart disease by 75%, it reduces the level of cholesterol, makes blood thin, thus prevents the formation of blood clots. It also has anti-oxidant properties.

Hence, in order to obtain maximum benefits from these Indian spices it is important to make them a part of our daily diet.

Herbs and Spices to Reduce the Inflammation of Rheumatoid Arthritis

Across the world arthritis is spreading at an alarming rate. Millions of people are suffering from the disease and billions of rupees are spent every year on drugs for its treatment. But these drugs have their own side effects, as a result many people are opting for alternate medication.

What is Arthritis?

The blood carries nutrition and oxygen to the joints. When the blood supply to joints is reduced due to different reasons, the bones of the joints are not repaired and cause pain in the joints, stiffness, inflamed bones, and tiredness.

The National Institute of Health offer a range of alternative therapies using herbs, spices and dietary supplements. Some of the herbs and spices have anti inflammatory properties which help to reduce the inflammation in the joints.

reduce the inflammation in Rheumatoid Arthritis

Herbs and spices that help to reduce the inflammation in Rheumatoid Arthritis

Ginger– The inflammation of joints in rheumatoid arthritis is caused due to ‘imbalance’ in a person and also due to high acidic (animal) protein food intake. When a person adds foods containing alkaline foods of vegetable origin, or vegetable proteins, the actual cause of the inflammation is reversed.

Ginger contains ‘Gingerol’ which has anti inflammatory properties and it helps to avert the inflammation in joints.

Turmeric – Turmeric is a wonder spice that contains Curcumin which has anti-inflammatory and anti arthritic properties. Curcumin taken in the natural form, by including turmeric in the diet, or as a supplement, is more effective than taking drugs for treatment.

In a study conducted, it was found that patients taking Curcumin treatment had no side effects as compared to those taking regular treatment. The anti-inflammatory properties of Curcumin restrain the synthesis of certain enzymes that cause inflammation.

For therapeutic purpose, put one table spoon of turmeric powder in boiling water and mix. Drink this after cooling.

Cinnamon – Cinnamon bark is used as a spice in Indian cuisine, tea and also to make medicinal powders. In 2012, a study was published in a journal which stated that the extract of cinnamon had properties to lessen the substances that were responsible for causing inflammation and damage to the tissues.

For Rheumatoid Arthritis, Cinnamon can be taken in limited form, not more than 6 grams a day.

Garlic – Garlic when taken fresh has anti-inflammatory properties which reduce the swelling and pain in rheumatoid arthritis. When heated the anti-inflammatory properties are reduced. Garlic reduces the production of cytokines, a substance that causes inflammation.

spices

Black Pepper – Commonly used in natural therapy, Black Pepper is known to reduce swelling and pain. Gels and creams used in treatment of arthritis contain ‘capsaicin’ found in hot peppers. The properties of black pepper powder are same as that of capsaicin. So, black pepper can be included in the diet for its anti-inflammatory properties and get relief from swelling and pain.

Tulsi or Holy Basil – Tulsi is a very rich source of anti-oxidants, and its anti-inflammatory properties make it very effective in controlling inflammation of joints.

In order to prevent or get relief from the pain, stiffness and swelling of rheumatoid arthritis include the above herbs and spices in your daily diet. If you are suffering from rheumatoid arthritis you may also need to avoid certain foods like dairy products, meat, refined sugar and sweets, as these deteriorate the symptoms.

Elaichi – A Multipurpose Spice Variety to Flavor Sweet and Salt

Cardamom is known as elaichi in India. It is usually added to traditional Indian desserts and other dishes for the strong flavor it imparts. It is not just the taste but also the health benefits of elaichi which makes it one of the favorite spice in India.

Types of Elaichi:

Green cardamom (Choti elaichi) – This elaichi is green in color and is the smaller one. It enhances flavors and has a pleasing aroma. It is usually used in drinks and desserts.

Black cardamom (Badi elaichi) – This elaichi is the bigger one of the two and is black in color. It is usually used when cooking spicy dishes because of its strong flavors. It is best used while cooking rice stews and curries.

Cardamom has a very strong flavor and taste, so very little needs to be added to a dish be it sweet or salty. It should be stored in pod form and should be ground just before adding to a dish as these lose the flavor very fast.

Types of Elaichi

Cardamoms are used in a range of Indian spice mixes, curries, tea masala, sweets, pickles and also for baking.

  • Lemon-cardamom cookies – These simple easy to cook cookies are made with butter, sugar, all purpose flour, lemon zest and ground cardamoms.
  • Cardamom butter chicken – To cook this mouth watering dish you need chicken breasts, cardamoms, cloves, garlic, coriander, green chillies, onions, turmeric, cumin, garam masala, fenugreek, cloves, cinnamon, tomatoes, curd and cream. 
tea masala

Benefits of Elaichi:

1. Improves digestion – Elaichi helps in stimulating and regular excretion of gastric enzymes in the stomach. It helps balance these acids and avoid gastric problems and providing relief from heart burns. Chewing an elaichi after meals helps people who suffer from flatulence and gas problems. Elaichi also helps with stomach cramps and helps relieve hiccups.

2. Anti spasmodic – Elaichi helps relieve stomach tremors and spasms. It also improves the blood circulation to our lungs and can be helpful for people suffering from sore throat, cough, bronchitis and asthma.

3. Detoxifying agent – Elaichi helps cleanse our body. It is considered to be a refinement general spice against caffeine. Elaichi also helps people quit their addictions like tobacco chewing, smoking, alcohol and even those with a sweet tooth.

4. Helps in oral problems – Elaichi helps cure tooth and gum infections. One of the most common benefits of elaichi is that it can be used as a mouth freshener. It also helps vocalists improve their voices.

5. Essential oils – Elaichi oil has anti depressant, antioxidant, antiseptic and anti ageing properties. Elaichi oil can be applied to a persons forehead to treat headaches. It can also be added to bathing water to help relieve stress, depression and fight common ailments.

6. Tonic – Elaichi helps enhance appetite. A well known benefit of elaichi includes decreasing nausea. It also helps relieve mouth ulcers. It helps with the functioning of our central nervous system and relieve weekness.

7. Source of Minerals – Elaichi contains calcium, potassium, iron, copper, manganese and magnesium. These minerals help control heart rate and blood pressure. These minerals are also important for the everyday functioning of our body.

Benefits of elaichi have been known to mankind since ancient times. In Ayurveda, elaichi is referred to as tridoshic and is used to balance the three doshas of the human body. So when you add cardamoms to your dish you are also adding a number of health benefits as well.

Do You Know Adding Clove When You Boil Vegetables Make The Recipes Unmatched?

Cloves are one of the most common type of spices that are used extensively for cooking and many other purposes. One of the most prominent uses of clove in food is to add flavor. Cloves are also used to make oil, as an antiseptic and for many other medical purposes

Cloves get their flavor due to the presence of a compound called Eugenol, the composition of which varies between 70 to 90 percent, which has an extremely strong aroma. Traditionally used for their seasoning benefits, cloves also have various other health benefits and have been traditionally used as an ingredient in preparing medicines for many diseases.

Cloves grow on an evergreen tree that is found in Asia and South America. Cloves are completely natural and are said to offer several health benefits. The tree’s flower buds, fruit and leaves are also said to produce clove oil, which is widely used in aromatherapy. It’s health benefits are said to result from its supposedly anti inflammatory, pain relieving and anti bacterial effects.

Clove

Adding cloves when you boil vegetables

When clove is added to vegetables while cooking or boiling them, it adds a pungent sweet flavor to the dish and also a number of health benefits. Its flavor goes well with other basic spices like cumin, coriander, ginger etc.

1. Toothache

Cloves help provide respite from toothache which is why you will find them mentioned as one of the main ingredients in most toothpastes.

2. Nausea and vomiting

Clove oil and cloves, when taken together are known to provide relief for vomiting and nausea.

3. Cough and breath

Cloves are known to cure cough and bad breath. Cough and bad breath are very common problems that we face everyday and these problems can be well treated by consuming cloves on a daily basis. This can be done by including cloves in your dishes and also as a refreshment at any time of the day.

4. Seasoning abilities

Cloves have various seasoning capabilities, which make it very easy to be included into any dish, dessert and beverage to provide a strong aroma and flavor to the food.

5. Sinusitis

Cloves also help over come sinusitis. This can be done by sniffing grounded clove powder through your nose. This action can be done with the use of a straw of adequate size.

6. Flatulence

Cloves can be mixed with water and used during the preparation of tea to help eradicate flatulence.

7. Cold

Common cold can be effectively treated by using cloves. The patient needs to drink a lukewarm mixture made with ten drops of honey and clove oil. This mixture should be consumed two to three times a day.

8. Aphrodisiac

Cloves can also be used as an aphrodisiac. Its fragrance can also help eliminate fatigue and exhaustion related ailments.

9. Stress

Cloves help sooth our senses and relive stress in our body. They can be mixed with basil, cardamom and mint in water to make a flavored tea. This tea when consumed with honey can help provide relief from stress. More details visit at http://india.ramdevfood.com/products/blended-masala.html.

Add cloves to a recipe while cooking the dish for that lovely flavor and loads of health benefits.

Harvest Time of Indian Spices

Add a small amount of spice to your dish to bring out the natural flavor of the raw ingredients, vegetables, meat etc. A pinch of pepper added to salads or soups adds zest to the taste. Spices not only add flavor to a dish but also add health benefits. Different parts of the plants are used in dry, whole or powder form as spices. These are grown in various states of India, as they need different type of climate and soil.

Chilies (Botanical name: Capsicum annuum) is harvested between the months of October and March. The fruit of the plant is dried and grinded to create chilli powder. It adds hot taste and red colour to the food.

Coriander (Botanical name: Coriandrum sativum) is harvested between the months of February and March. The fruit and leaf of the plant is used in fresh whole and dried form.

Cumin seed (Botanical name: Cuminum cyminum) is harvested between the months of February and early March. The fruit is used in dried whole and powdered form.

Asafoetida (Hing) (Botanical name: Ferula asafetida): It is a perennial plant that grows to a height of about 2-4 meters. In India, it is grown in Kashmir and Punjab. The spice is a gum excreted from the rhizome and stem of the plant.

Turmeric (Botanical name: Curcuma longa) is harvested between the months of January and early March. The plant takes 7 to 8 months to mature. The Rhizome (root) is used in fresh whole or dried powdered form. It adds an appetizing yellow colour to the dish.

Black pepper (Botanical name: Piper nigrum) is harvested between the months of November and mid March. The berries from the plant are dried and used whole or in dried form.

Ajowan (Bishop’s weed) (Botanical name: Trachyspermum ammi) is harvested between the months of January and early March. The fruit is used in dried whole form.

Fenugreek (Botanical name: Trigonella foenum graecum) is harvested between the months of February and early March. The seeds are used in whole or powdered form.

Cardamom (Botanical name: Elettaria cardamom maton) is harvested between the months of September and January. The capsules are dried and used in whole or powdered form. It is used to flavour sweet as well as salty dishes.

Clove (Botanical name: Eugenia caryophyllus) is harvested between the months of December and February. The unopened flower bud is dried and used mostly in whole form.

Cinnamon (Botanical name: Cinnamomum Zeylanicum) is harvested between the months of August and November. The bark of the tree is used in whole or powdered form to add flavor. It is used to flavor sweet, and salty dishes and also in hot drinks.

Ginger (Botanical name: Zingiber officinale) is harvested between the months of December and early February. The Rhizome (root) is used in fresh whole or dried powdered form.

Garlic (Botanical name: Allium sativum) is harvested between the months of February and early April. The bulb is used in fresh whole, chopped or dried powdered form.

Mustard (Botanical name: Brassica juncea) is harvested between the months of February and early April. The seeds are used in whole form or are ground and used to make a paste or sauce.

Kokam (Botanical name: Garcinia indica) is harvested between the months of May and July. The fruit is used in whole dried form.

Caraway seed (Botanical name: Carum carvi) is harvested between the months of June and July. The fruit of the plant is used in dried whole form.

Fennel seed (Botanical name: Foeniculum) is harvested between the months of February and early March. The fruit is used in dried whole form as a mouth freshener.

Saffron (Botanical name: Crocus sativus) is harvested between the months of October and early November. The stigma of the flower is used in dried whole form.

Super Spices – How to Use Them?

Spices add flavour, aroma and a beautiful taste to the food. To bring out the maximum flavour of the spice you must know how and when to add a particular spice to a dish. Spices are used whole or in powder form. Some spices are mild in flavour while others have a strong aroma.

How to use Spices:

Before one begins to use spices in cooking you must know how to use different spices and also which spices taste good in which dish. To begin with add very small quantity of spice, if you like the taste you can add a little more later on.

Buy whole spices if possible and grind them fresh for better results. When ground and stored, these tend to lose flavour over a period of time. Always store spices in a cool and dry place like a cupboard. These should be stored away from hot and humid places like a stove, window, near a dishwasher etc.

In vegetable dishes – Vegetables have a strong flavour of their own. Spices with delicate flavour like cumin, mustard, fennel, coriander and Turmeric Powder go well with vegetables.

In curries and main course dishes – Spices with strong flavour and aroma like cardamom, clove, cinnamon when used in small quantities do wonders to these dishes.

  • A pinch of cinnamon powder added to a soup adds a lovely flavour to it.
  • Heat oil in a pan, add cumin seeds, cloves, cinnamon or cardamom, sizzle for a while and pour over a dish already cooked like mashed potatoes or a curry.
  • Freshly ground cloves and cinnamon, when added to a meat loaf or any meat dish give the dish an amazing flavour.
  • While marinating meat add a little curry powder, ginger and garlic to curd.
  • When cooking dry vegetables like potatoes, cauliflower and paneer etc., add cumin, dry red chilli and asafoetida to hot oil before adding vegetables. This adds a wonderful aroma to the dish.
  • To make your drinks like lemonade more striking, add a few pieces of saffron to it.
  • While cooking rice, add cumin and two to three cloves to hot oil before adding rice. This gives a very pleasant flavour to the cooked rice.
  • For that hot spicy taste, black pepper should be freshly ground before adding to a dish. During cooking the taste of the pepper becomes less, so for more flavour add a little more pepper towards end of the cooking.
  • Asafoetida has a very strong flavour, so use a very small amount of it when you season or temper a dish.

Some vegetables and spice combinations:

  • Sweet Potatoes – Cumin Powder, Cinnamon
  • Potatoes – Cumin Powder, Coriander, Mint, Garlic, Mustard
  • Cabbage – Cumin Seeds, Mustard Seeds, Coriander
  • Carrots – Cumin, Ginger, Coriander
  • Peas – Cumin, Ginger, Coriander
  • Beans – Cumin, Coriander, Ginger
  • Spinach – Ginger, Garlic, Cumin, Coriander

It is very important to understand the seasonings being used since this will improve or spoil the taste of a dish. So go ahead and experiment with your food, add spices to add aroma and flavour to your food.

Uses of Spices in the Kashmiri Cuisine

Condiments and spices are an integral part of any Indian cuisine especially in the Kashmiri Culinary art and their cuisine. Dishes prepared especially by Kashmiri pundits contain special spices to give them their trade mark flavour.

Kashmir used to be a part of the ancient Silk Route. Spice traders from all over the world used to pass through this valley. They also stayed in Kashmir as visitors to enjoy the summer climates and buy and sell saffron, spices, medicinal herbs, dry fruits etc.

The knowledge of the medicinal values of different spices and condiments was inherited by the Kashmiri pundits from ancient Sanskrit texts of Ayurveda. The use of these spices was and still is common in almost all Kashmiri houses. There is hardly any spice or condiment that is not available at a Kashmiri grocer. A special class of traders came up to deal especially in herbs, spices, seeds, roots and minerals.

Spices used in the Kashmiri cuisine:

By learning how to use local condiments, herbs and spices and those that were introduced by the travelling traders, Kashmiris developed hundreds of exquisite dishes which included both non-vegetarian and vegetarian dishes like Rogan Josh, Yakhni, Dum Olav etc.

These dishes vary from sweet or sour, hot to soft, crunchy and some spicy and fragrant. The art of blending various spices in correct proportions thus matured in order to prepare dishes with a variety of flavours and aromas. These dishes were created to perfection in-order to suit various seasons and occasions and tastes of both Indians and outsiders.

In-order to cope with the ever growing demands, a group of professional chefs grew up to compete with one another for the production of exquisite dishes. Thanks to the patronage of influential people who permanently engaged these professional chefs, Kashmiri culinary art gained popularity.

Condiments and spices such as asafoetida hing, fennel seeds, ginger powder, cinnamon, cardamom, cloves, and cumin are used in good quantities and freely by Kashmiri pundits. On the other hand Kashmiri Muslims use these condiments and spices, commonly known as Masala sparingly, but there is always a predominance of garlic, onion and shallot in their vegetarian and meat preparations.

Shallot which is known as Pran in Kashmir is not used by pundits in their kitchens. In recent times, garlic and onions are used in a few of their meat and vegetable curries. They prefer using Asafoetida also known as Hing instead of garlic, onions and shallots.

Rogan Josh – This popular lamb based dish has its origin in Persia. Kashmiri pundits prepare it without onions and garlic. The basic spices used in this dish are fennel seeds, asafoetida, ginger powder, cardamom, clove, cinnamon, bay leaves etc. Curd is used to add consistency to the gravy.

Kashmiri Dum Aloo– ‘Dum’ means slow cooking. This dish is prepared using small baby potatoes. Spices like asafoetida, bay leaves, cardamom powder, clove, fennel seeds, dry ginger powder, Kashmiri Chilli Powder, cumin powder are used to add that special taste and flavor to the dish.

Kashmiri Garam masala – This mixture of spices is very fragrant. It is made by grinding together green cardamom, clove, black cardamom, cinnamon, cumin seeds, coriander seeds, fennel, black pepper, fenugreek seeds, and nutmeg.

Hence, those who wish to learn the Kashmiri culinary art, the know-how of different condiments, spices and ingredients used by the Kashmiris is necessary. Proper knowledge of processing methods and presentation of these before their utilization is important.

Different Ways of Using Cumin

One of the most beneficial tools one could learn while cooking at home is the use of various spices from around the world.

For centuries now spices have been used to enhance flavors, as medicines or even as colour enhancers in various cuisines. When you open your horizons to the use of spices, you end up adding a whole new dimension to your cuisine. One such spice that is easily found and is worth having on your spice rack is Cumin.

What is Cumin?

What do we know about Cumin? Cumin seeds are potent and pungent little things with the ability to change the entire course of a dish. Cumin is most commonly known to be used in Mediterranean, Indian, Mexican, Middle Eastern and some Chinese dishes as well. Cumin was one of the most accessible and most popular condiment back in the middle ages for Europeans. Stories are told of soldiers going into war with cumin bread loaves in the bags for good luck. It was extensively used by the Romans, Greeks, Persians and Egyptians. More details visit at http://international.ramdevfood.com/products/premium-spices.html

Cumin is originally a member of the herbaceous annual in the parsley family, but rather than having a crisp and bright flavour, Cumin is known for its warm and smoky taste. It was originally a native to the Nile river valley but for centuries now has been cultivated in China, Eastern Mediterranean, India, North Africa and America.

More commonly used in South American and Indian cuisines, this spice has a distinctive flavour and aroma. Some cumin seeds have even been dated all the way back to the 2nd B.C. Cumin also receives mention in the old testament of the bible.

Uses of Cumin:

Either used by being ground into a Cumin powder or as a whole, Cumin has a warm, grounding taste which is used in many soups and stews and can really bring some warmth to a lot of recipes. One can change their whole perspective about what breakfast should taste like by adding some cumin into their scrambled eggs.

Cumin can also be used in your breakfast potatoes, Brussels sprouts and hummus. In India we add cumin in ground or whole form to most of our vegetables, to give them a distinctive flavour. Ground or whole cumin can be used with lentils and can also be added with paprika to your rice recipe. Whole cumin seeds can be toasted in a frying pan or skillet and used as a warm and crunchy topping of salads and soups too.

Some studies have found that Cumin extracts decreased total cholesterol and also prevented excessive weight loss. Cumin has also proved to improve our immune systems and can help increase bone density and bone micro architecture. Certain studies have also shown cumin to protect our livers from the adverse effects of alcohol.

Cumin is one of the most versatile condiments, so next time when you are cooking something try adding a bit of Cumin to your dishes in whole, toasted or ground form.