The Ultimate Guide to Indian Spice Boxes
No matter if you are a budding chef, own a restaurant or are just looking to “spice up” your kitchen, your cooking space will not be complete without an Indian Spice box. Originally called a ‘Masala Dabba’, Indian Spice Boxes are made from stainless steel containers and usually have seven compartments to hold the most widely used spices; though you can substitute these for your favourites if you wish. Here are some of the top facts and questions regarding Indian Spice boxes and how you can make the most out of yours…
The seven main Indian spices are: Black Pepper, Cardamom, Chilli peppers, Cinnamon, Coriander Seeds, Cumin Seeds and Turmeric. All have different benefits for both your own health and flavours of the dish, so it is up to you to determine what you want your dish to taste like. It is a great idea to experiment and find those you like best, working with those that complement each other for a truly flavoursome finish.
What spices can you put in a Masala Dabba?
It is your Masala Dabba so you can put in it any spices you see fit. Some of the most common ones include Tumeric, Red chilli powder, Cumin Powder, Garam masala, Cumin seeds, Black mustard seeds, Coriander seeds and Asafoetida. It's a good idea to think about what sort of recipes you cook the most and the spices you will need for those. The ones you use the most should be put in the Indian Spice Box so they are easy to use and access.
What are the advantages of using a spice box?
Most spices, particularly those which are ground, are known to lose their flavour and aroma quickly - not ideal for cooking. Because of this, by putting small amounts in a Masala Dabba you can just use the spices when you need them, a bit at a time, and keep their freshness, flavours and aromas as they are meant to be. Another advantage of Indian Spice boxes is that it enables you to add the spices as they are needed into your dinner quickly and easily.
While cooking an Indian dish you often need to heat the oil up to an optimum temperature before adding your different seeds and spices, so you can focus on this while having your spices in front of you, ready to add in straight away when the timing is right. Your Indian Spice box should come with Masala Dabba spoons, but you can also order more if needed. There are designed for each compartment of the spice box and are ideal for measuring out your spices when needed. You can also use them for any other service uses, such as sprinkling herbs and spices on top of the dishes once they are cooked. The inner boxes are also easily removable so can be cleaned safely and simply and will last for years to come.
What is best for home use and commercial use?
Whether you are looking for a spice box for your commercial or personal needs you will find one to suit. There are larger spice boxes which are ideal for keeping spices for curry or even different rubs for meat and steaks so you can ensure you don't run out halfway through your recipe. This is ideal if you are cooking in large batches and need to keep an eye on everything at once. These spice boxes can contain up to 9 compartments ideal for making a wider range of dishes in a short space of time. For home use, there are smaller boxes ideal for keeping a more proportioned amount of spice ready for use in your own domestic cooking.
What are the best spices for curry?
Some of the most essential spices for a delicious curry are Tumeric, Cumin, Chillies and Ginger so it is well worth playing around with these for your recipes. If you are a novice to curry making, try these first and add in other spices as you experiment with flavours. Try different amounts of spices too, altering the amount depending on how spicy or tangy you want it to be.
If you are looking to add an Indian Spice box to your kitchen, think about the different spices you would like to include and whether you would like a large or small one. A great purchase, it will serve you for years to come, providing the perfect utensil to keep your spices fresh and your kitchen organised.
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