When it comes to cooking in India, spices are like superheroes that add flavour and enhance the depth of dishes. If you are someone who cooks food regularly, you must have come across the spice box or namak daani at your house, which is filled with different kinds of spices. One important spice from this namak daani is Cumin, or jeera, which is used in almost every dish or curry for its warm and earthy taste. But what if you run out of it? Thankfully, your namak daani would have several other alternatives that can save your day! Intrigued? Read on to learn more about 5 alternatives to cumin (jeera) in your kitchen.
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Here Are 5 Alternatives To Cumin In Your Kitchen
1. Coriander Seeds (Dhania)
If you are out of cumin, coriander seeds can work just fine for your dishes and gravies. Dhania seeds are known for their citrusy undertones and mild flavour and can complement a variety of dishes. Whether it is in powder or seed form, coriander or dhania adds depth and complexity to dals and curries.
2. Fennel Seeds (Saunf)
Fennel seeds offer a sweet and aromatic alternative to cumin. These seeds have a subtle liquorice-like flavour, which adds the perfect depth to your dishes. The best way to use fennel seeds is to slightly toast them to release their fragrance, grind them in a mixer jar, and sprinkle the powder into your cooking. Whether you’re cooking a curry or stir-frying vegetables, fennel seeds can be a great option for an alternative to cumin.
3. Mustard Seeds (Rai)
Bold and pungent, mustard seeds serve as a perfect alternative to cumin while cooking. Once you heat them, they release an aromatic essence which gets infused into your dishes. Mustard seeds are also perfect for tempering your dals and curries, as these tiny seeds deepen the flavour of your dishes.
4. Nigella Seeds (Kalonji)
Also known as Kalonji, nigella seeds can be used as an alternative to cumin as they introduce a subtle bitterness and nuttiness to your dishes. These seeds can be used on breads, in spice blends or even pickles, to enrich their flavour profile. Nigella seeds are versatile and have an irresistible aroma, making them perfect for your cooking.
5. Ajwain (Carom seeds)
Known for their medicinal properties and distinct flavour profile, Ajwain seeds also make for an excellent substitute for cumin. Ajwain seeds have a pungent aroma, and notes of mint and thyme, which enriches the flavour profile of any dish. Ajwain seeds are best used in dishes featuring meats, lentils or root vegetables.
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Did you know about these alternatives to cumin? Let us know in the comments below!
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