The Indian Spice Industry

Salt, oil and spices are all important ingredients used while preparing Indian food. They are an essential part of our lives. A kitchen shelf which boasts of bottles containing turmeric, asefoetida, cumin seeds and the like is a common sight in an Indian household. The fact remains that in every house, spices of different kinds are used to make distinctive and different tastes in the Indian cuisine and a variety of spices are also used to enhance different flavors in our dishes.

The different variety of spices available in the market today are: Asafoetida or ‘hing’, Bay leaf or ‘tej patta’, Red Chili powder or ‘lal mirch’, Cardamom or ‘elaichi’, Coriander or ‘dhaniya’, Clove or ‘laung’, Curry leaves or ‘curry patta’, Cumin or ‘jeera’, Fenugreek or ‘methi’, Ginger or ‘adrak’, Garlic or ‘lassan’, Mustard seeds or ‘rye’, Nutmeg or ‘jaiphal, Black pepper or ‘kali mirch’, Saffron or ‘kesar’, Turmeric or ‘haldi’.


Diverse needs of Consumers

Most of these spices are grown in different parts of our country. Today the demand for Indian spices has increased many folds in other countries also.

  • Food– Indian spices help to enhance the flavour of our Indian recipes. These also add colour to a dish and make it more appetising.
  • Beauty products –Spices from India are widely used in beauty products and in spiritual ceremonies. When applied on skin as a paste it improves the complexion.
  • Medicinal value – Indian spices provide various health benefits. Some are used to heal wounds as well as treat rheumatic disorders, gastrointestinal symptoms, de-worming, rhinitis and it is also used as a cosmetic.Some also help boost our digestive system and have a positive effect on our health. These are widely used as detoxifying agents and for treating various health problems. They help prevent tumour formation, decrease gene mutations and exhibit anti-oxidative potential in animals.

 

History reveals that India has been exporting spices to various countries for centuries. Hence India is recognized all over the world for its spices. In the year 2012/13, India produced a total of approx. 5.9 million tones of spices out of which around 10 percent was exported to various countries. The Indian spice industry is growing rapidly.

Spice companies not only cater to the food industry but also sell their products to the cosmetic and pharmaceutical companies. Indian spice companies’ account for almost 45 to 50 percent of the spices exported around the world. Since the demand for spices has increased world over, India has become the centre for selling spices to other countries.

Companies from around the globe have been showing interest in Indian spices and are looking to join hands with local manufacturers. Indian spice manufacturers are setting up new production units all over the country to meet the rising demands from a growing majority of health conscious people who prefer using natural flavours of spices than cheaper synthetic flavours.

Spices are the basic building blocks of the Indian cuisine. With an industry that is estimated to grow to an approximate net worth of over 17 billion dollars by the 2018, the Indian spice companies have a lot to look forward to in the coming years.

Further more information about basic and premium Spices, visit – http://india.ramdevfood.com/products/premium-spices.html

The Significance of Red Chilli Powder

Red Chilli PowderThe chilli, or chilli pepper, is the fruit of a plant. Humans have been eating it since over 6000 years. It has been used in food and in medicines. It was first discovered in America, but today it is being produced, exported and also consumed by India the most as compared to other countries.

The contribution of Andhra Pradesh in the export of the chilli is about 75%. There are many varieties of chilli pepper, out of these five species are cultivated. Capsaicin is the substance that gives the chillies their ‘hot’ flavour.

Red Chilli powder

Red chilli powder or lal mirch powder is a very hot spice, if consumed in excess it can cause a burning sensation on the tongue, in stomach, and in ears. So, it should be taken in small quantity. In Indian cuisine, red chillies are used whole or in powder form. It is used in almost all Indian dishes. Its red colour and hot aroma augment a recipe.

Ripe red chillies are sun dried to conserve them for a long time. After grinding them the popular red chilli powder is formed. This is used in curries and other cuisine to give the dish its beautiful bright colour.

Two types of red chilli powder is found in the market, dark red coloured powder is less hot as compared to the light red coloured which is very spicy. Take care while buying the chilli powder, check the label and buy a good brand chilli powder.

Storage of Red Chilli Powder

Red chilli powder can be stored for 10 to 12 months in air tight containers. It should be kept in cold, dry places away from direct heat and sun. A small piece of asafetida added to the container keeps the powder fresh for a longer time.

Benefits of Red Chilli powder

  • Vitamin C is found in huge amount in chillies. It is a water soluble antioxidant.
  • These also contain vitamin B, carotene, and minerals like potassium, iron and magnesium.
  • Capsaicin found in red chillies improves metabolism and blood circulation.
  • Capsaicin is anti-bacterial, and a pain reliever.
  • It reduces pain and helps to clear congested respiratory system.
  • It helps to reduce weight, hastens digestion and metabolism.
  • It reduces LDL cholesterol in overweight people.
  • It improves the ability of the body to dissolve fibrin needed to form blood clots during an injury.
  • It helps to improves immune system of the body as it contains vitamins A, B, and C.
  • Capsaicin in red chillies, is anti-inflammatory, so it helps in the treatment of arthritis, psoriasis etc.

Uses of Chilli Pepper /Powder

  • To make hot sauce, fresh or dried chillies are used.
  • It is one of the main ingredients of the spice mixture, curry powder.
  • It is used to add taste, colour and flovour in almost all Indian dishes.
  • In soups, chilli sauce etc. it is used as a seasoning agent.
  • It is used to prepare vegetables, curries, snacks, and pickles.
  • Capsaicin found in chilli pepper, is the main constituent of pepper spray, a non- toxic weapon.

Conclusion

Red chilli powder is used in every Indian home for almost all dishes to add taste, colour, flavor etc. A dish looks drab without red chilli powder. It is one of the essential spices for seasoning a dish. With the range of health benefits it sure is an important spice.

Red Chilli Powder for Good Health

Indian food is greatly influenced with chilli powder. The hot flavour of the chilli powder enhances the recipes. It is the base for making any flavoured, hot and spicy food. It is used in vegetarian and non-vegetarian cooking. It adds a lovely and wonderful red colour and sharp flavour in any recipe. Dishes can be easily enhanced and improved with adding a little amount of chilli powder in them.  Besides, red chillies are highly incorporated with the contents like Vitamin C and pro vitamin A. Capsaicin is a proven and an effective treatment for sensory nerve fibre disorders. Red chillies are known to be natural pain relievers. They are effective in clearing the congestion of the nose and lungs.

Red chillies greatly help the obese people, as they are known to help in losing weight and boost the immunity in the body. Red Chilli Powder is an indispensable ingredient in most dishes. The Red Chilli Powder adds a hot flavour to the dish. Chillies contain an impressive list of plant derived chemical compounds that are known to have disease preventing and health promoting properties. The capsaicin in chillies has anti-bacterial, anti-carcinogenic, analgesic and anti-diabetic properties. It also found to reduce LDL cholesterol levels in obese individuals. Chillies contain a good amount of minerals like potassium, manganese, iron, and magnesium. Potassium is an important component of cell and body fluids that helps controlling heart rate and blood pressure.

Red chilli powder contains vitamin A and our body needs vitamin A for the maintenance of your eyesight as you age as well as to contribute to maintaining the health of your bones, teeth, skin, internal membranes and reproductive systems. Red chilli powder also contains vitamin C and vitamin C is an antioxidant. Vitamin C also helps strengthen your immune system and heal injuries. It is also rich in many important minerals.

Chilli has been the most important spice throughout the history. Chilli powder, when used in any dish, transforms the bland dish into a deliciously hot dish. Dried chilli contributes the major share among the spices consumed in India. It has a pungent and a pleasant flavour. Chillies stimulate our taste buds and thereby increase the flow of saliva which contains the enzyme amylase which in turn helps in the digestion of starchy or cereal foods etc. into glucose. It gives piquancy and spice to the dish. It is the easiest way to give life to the dish. Chillies stimulate our taste buds and thus increase the flow of saliva which contains the enzyme amylase which in turn helps in the digestion of starchy or cereal foods etc. into glucose.

Chillies help to clear the lungs, and stimulate digestive system and stimulate the taste buds. They act as detoxifiers as they remove waste products from our body and increases supply nutrients to the tissues. The pungency in the chilli powder depends on the variety of the chilli used in preparing the powder. The low oil content helps in retaining its red colour which will not fade away with time.