Homemade Garam Masala Recipe


garam-masalaGaram Masala is almost always the secret magic ingredient that imparts most of the flavor to Indian food, and there's nothing like a homemade garam masala recipe! There are several recipes for curry powders, but this one is the most widely-used. A mix of several spices lightly roasted and ground into a fine powder, Garam Masala is much like all-spice, except with different flavors. This fragrant spice is best made fresh just before you begin cooking, but since most of us do not have the luxury of time, it works in our favor that Garam Masala can be stored for 3-4 months without losing its flavor and aroma! It is indeed very easy to make, and just adding a pinch will go a long way to give a lasting impression to your recipes. Every household has its own recipe, and here I share my mom's garam masala recipe, hoping that it will win you more accolades as a cook, just as it has done to me!

Garam Masala, which literally means "Hot and Spicy" is undoubtedly the heart of most Indian Cuisine, especially north indian and mughlai dishes. And almost every one has a "mom's garam masala recipe" to share. It is basically just a combination of different spices, and you can modify the basic recipe shown below to suit your taste by adding or omitting spices as required. It is best to add this spice towards the end of cooking your meal; and don't worry, unlike its name, this spice powder is more aromatic than spicy!

Ingredients
Makes about 4 tbsp of Spice Powder

1 tbsp cardamom seeds
1 2" long cinnamon stick
1 tsp black cumin (shahjeera)
1 tsp cloves
1 tsp black peppercorns
1/4 nutmeg
1 tsp cumin seeds
1/2 tsp dried coriander seeds
1/2 tsp mace powder (javantari)
1 piece star anise
1 long bay leaf

Method
Roast all the aboe spices lightly on low-flame for about 2 mins. Now powder them in a clean, dry spice grinder until smooth. Store in an airtight container in a cool, dry place.

This Garam Masala can be added to any gravies or curries, and not just indian! The aromatic spices in this recipe add a subtle flavor to your dish. But remember to use this very sparingly, as it is very powerful in taste. Freshly ground garam masala can be stored for upto 3 months in an air-tight container in a cool, dry and dark place.

My mother has been my biggest inspiration in cooking, now surpassed by my husband. Upto this day, she deligently makes her signature garam masala and parcels it to me all the way from India, just so I wouldn't have to compromise on the taste of freshly-ground spices. If that doesn't convey love, what does?! So this post is dedicated to my mom, and I hope her recipe adds more "spice" to your life, just like it did to mine!:)

More Basic Recipes:
How To Make Paneer
Homemade Recipe for Marinara Sauce
Restaurant-Style Recipe for Indian Gravies


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42 comments :

easycrafts said...

I guess the masala would have filled your house with a nice aroma...thanks for sharing

Trupti said...

Hey Mansi,
your mom's version of Garam Masala looks nice..& nice click

bee said...

thanks, dear mansi.

ANJALI J. said...

we too use the same ingredients for this masala. but i never tried it :)

michelle said...

I saw this on Heidi's site once and since then have fallen in love with the spice! I love your pic, and also the spices that go in there..I'll definitely be making this as I don't like the store-bought ones...thanks for sharing a wonderful recipe!

-michelle

Mansi Desai said...

thanks guys! this post is really simple, but special...I'm glad you'll liked my mom's version of garam masala:) I'll convey these compliments to her!:)

Medhaa said...

hi, nice post my mom too keeps sending me all the freshly ground spices and even though we can do it, it feels so speacial when moms send it and everything tastes better when they make it.

notyet100 said...

nice one.,,,with good detailing..

Uma said...

nothing could equal the home made masalas, Mansi! Your mom's recipe for garam masala looks so fresh and aromatic. Thanks for sharing.

ranji said...

That click so simple yet beautiful...nice entry:).Thanks for sharing the garam masal recipe!!!

Swati: Sugarcraft India said...

A lovely version of garam masala.. Really the dish is incomplete without a pinch of it.. I love the smell which fills up the house when its freshly ground.

Mansi Desai said...

thanks folks!

Medhaa - I couldn't agree with you more! even when I tell my mom I can make it myself, or buy it from here, she insists on making it herself and sending it for us:) and yes, because of her love, it tastes much better and fulfilling!

Vanamala Hebbar said...

Fantastic .... will try it

Sukanya Ramkumar said...

Nice masala recipe... Tastes good in all currys... Love it...

Anonymous said...

that looks brilliant! I love the photo, and thanks for sharing a fantastic recipe! both me and my husband love indian food and this recipe will surely help me make them more often at home:)

~shirley

Kalai said...

I can already smell the aromas of spices roasting... Looks wonderful, Mansi. Thanks so much for sharing your mother's treasured recipe. :)

Annu said...

Masala looks like masala:-)

Divya Vikram said...

Nice click..And thanks for the recipe..Will use this recipe next time

shriya said...

This version of garam masala is very nice mansi.The pic is simply superb.Great Entry.

giz said...

Perfect - just absolutely perfect -like you read my mind - I've been on the lookout for a garam masala recipe - this could just be it.

Cynthia said...

I am always on the look out for other garam masala recipes! thanks :)

AnuZi said...

Aww sweet that you dedicated this post to you mom :o) Yumm recipe chica ;o)Never made my own but I think it would interesting to try.

Andhra Flavors said...

Hey Thanks for home made garam masala recipe.

Kevin said...

Making your own Garam Masala sounds like fun. I am going to have to try. Though I don't think that a cinnamon stick is going to fit in my grinder...

Lissie said...

great entry! i too like using homemade garam masala...

Mansi Desai said...

Kevin - you can easily break the cinnamom stick into pieces as it is brittle. You don't need the entire stick for making a small amount..hope this helps!

Giz - I hope this proves to be the end of your quest!

Thanks everyone - the recipe compliments are being passed on to my mom while I am graciously accepting those for the photo!:)D

The Short (dis)Order Cook said...

Fascinating (as so many of your posts are). I felt like I could smell the spices wafting out of the computer screen.

gewinnspiele kostenlos said...

The aromas must be amazing. All you make looks delicious. Thanks for your mom's homemade garam masala recipe. I seriously need to spend a week in the kitchen to concentrate on making more Indian dishes, it looks great and it's a personal fav. And this one looks ultimate.

T.W. Barritt at Culinary Types said...

I have been adding garam masala to a recipe for black bean veggie burgers that I've been making. I love the fragrance, but I'd never thought about making it myself. Now having seen your ingredient list, I'm realizing that cinnamon is one of the underlying aromas. I'll bet the fragrance when heating all those spices together is wonderful!

Cheesecakediet said...

Yummi!

Johanna said...

It is no wonder that you love your garam masala if you have it fresh and reminding you of your mother! If I do get around to making my own I will be looking at your recipe - thanks

Jenni Malsingh said...

Lovely recipe. Do you use a mortar and pestle or a coffee grinder to grind the spices to a powder? I do both, depending on how much I am making! See some pictures here, if you are interested: http://mangosoup.blogspot.com/2009/08/making-spice-masalas-garam-masala.html

Sanjay said...

I just tried making this masala. I used green cardamom seeds. The masala turned out to have a strong dominating smell of cardamom. Is this how the masala is supposed to smell or am I doing something wrong?

Mansi said...

sanjay - green cardamom is way more stronger than than its black seed counterpart; als, it depends on what brand you buy too...some can be really strong, while the smaller green pods are lighter in smell and flavor... hence the pronounced smell....I would suggest you half your quantity(1/2 tbp in his case) and try again. The masala is supposed to have a faint smell, not a strong one, and make sure you roast all spices thoroughly before grinding..

hope this helps!

Anonymous said...

Hi Mansi,
I'm having the same problem as Sanjay, and was just writing to be sure I'm getting the recipe right. I'm guessing from your reply to Sanjay that what you use in your own recipe is black cardamom pods and not green ones--is this right? Also, does the Tablespoon quantity specified in your recipe refer to just the inner seeds, or to the entire pods (yet to be shelled)? Thanks in advance for your help! I love your blog!
-Jim

Mansi said...

Hi Jim

yes, I use black cardamon seeds, and the tbsp is the actual cardamom, with the shells. if you use 1 tbsp of shelled pods then it'll become too much cardamom flavor!:)

Ramya Kiran said...

Hey Mansi,
I was just looking for garam masala recipe online and found your recipe.Wow it really looks good.My issue is that I need to prepare at least about 200 gms of the GM(quantity wise).Can you please let me know how I can do that?Can i just multiply the quantity of each ingredient by 7 or 8 spoons to get a larger quantity?
Many thanks in advance

Mansi said...

Hi Ramya, I guess if you Triple the recipe, you should get 12 tbsp, which should be close to 200gms. sorry, but I have never precisely weighed the ingredients, so this has to be an approximation:)

Ramya Kiran said...

Hey mansi.Many thanks for ur reply.Will do that over the weekend and lets see how much of GM I wud be able to prepare.

Bint said...

I still dont get the cardamom thing. Please can you explain it again as i really like the ingredients to this recipe (i tried several!).
You use black cardamoms which i know.
1)- Do you use the whole pod (with the shell) or just the seeds (that come out from in the shell)?
2)- If you use the whole pod, do you grind the shell with it aswell or take the seeds out?
3)- Lastly, if you use the pods, how many do you think would make a tbsp? I find it wierd to measure whole pods with a spoon.
LOL
So sorry for my thickness!

Anonymous said...

Hi there Mansi,
Thanks for sharing your mom's Garam Masala recipe. I used to cooked briyani while I was in CO and always bought GM at Pakistani stores. Here, back in Malaysia, I guess people here don't use them except for the Indian community of course. Getting frustrated, I have to google for the recipe and I found that yours is the best. Thanks for sharing!

Anonymous said...

Requesting you to kindly translate this Ingredients in Hindi also for mass users.