|March 03, 2023


Understanding Indian Masalas is the only way to get a grip on cooking. India has a variety of dishes and produces a variety of spices. Don't let the unknown of Indian spices stop you from exploring the cuisine in your kitchen.

Commonly used Indian Masalas are as follows-

  • Black pepper
  • Cardamom
  • Cinnamon
  • Coriander
  • Cumin
  • Mace

Indian cuisine relies on a variety of spices. The abundance of herbs provides superb flavor and aroma from whole to ground, even in paste form. Without these flavorful Indian Masalas, cooking would not be the same.

Many spices are formed by grounding using a mortar and pestle, like Indian chili powderCurry masala gets prepared by a spice grinder to make it into powder.

The cooking method is essential for preparing an authentic Indian dish as the sequence of Indian Masalas impacts its flavor. Even a slight change in the cooking method can produce a different taste.

When you cook dishes, you need to add Indian masalas according to the recipe. Making curry needs curry masala. When you prepare paneer butter masala, you will require butter masala and common spices.

Alcoeats is the solution for all your Indian Masala needs. From magic masala, peri peri masala to dhaniya powder, and Indian chili powder. You will get every Masala you need for your Indian recipes.

How to Use Indian Spices in Cooking?

indian spice

There are various forms in which we can include Indian Masalas in cooking.

  • Sauteed
  • Fried
  • Whole
  • Ground
  • Roasted
  • Chopped

These spices blend entirely with the other ingredients while cooking to make the dish more flavorful.

Tips for Using Spices in Indian Cooking

Indian cuisine is famous for its use of numerous spices in each recipe. The blending of various spices adds a unique flavor to every dish.

Adding spices in order decides the flavor of the dish. A blend of different herbs and spices is the factor. Any variations in the order of spices can disrupt the outcome. 

Spices of strong flavor should be added first, followed by those of lighter and milder taste, to impart the desired aroma to an Indian dish. Many methods are there to bring out the perfect aroma and flavor to a dish by using spices.

Below are the cooking methods used in Indian cooking-

  • Frying
  • Sauteeing
  • Smoking
  • Roasting
  • Steaming

What is Blooming Method?

Blooming of spices is a method in which spices are added to hot oil. This method allows spices to retain their natural oils. This method enhances the flavor of spices.  When whole spices are cooked in hot oil, the heat causes their aromatic compounds to be released, thus adding flavor to the dish.

When whole spices are placed in hot oil, their aroma is brought out, and the resulting flavor is used to season the meal.

How to Bloom Whole Spices?

  • Heat the oil in a pan over medium heat.
  • Add and cook the whole spices till fragrant.
  • Don't overcook them.
  • Add other ingredients and continue your recipe.

The blooming of ground spices is much like blooming with whole spices, yet you need to apply low heat as ground spices can be burned quickly, resulting in a bitter flavor.

How to Bloom Ground Spices?

  • Mix the ground spices with water and make a paste.
  • Adding any liquid prevents ground spices from burning when added to hot oil.
  • Cook on a low flame till dry.
  • Stop when the oil starts to separate from the spices.

How to Store Spice?

Masala Jar

It is ideal for keeping spices in airtight compartments, sheltered from sunlight, and in a dry, cool location, either in the pantry or the spice cupboard.

The South-Asian spice box, masala dabba, is necessary to store spices. It is a stainless steel round-shaped box to store all essential spices in one place. The masala box differs in the spice assortment from region to region and kitchen to kitchen.

Masala box helps in cooking faster by keeping all essential spices handy. It should be organized based on the preference of spices while cooking recipes.

Major Must-have Spices 

Start with small quantities of spices while cooking. Go for keeping whole spices first because you can ground them according to the usage.

1. Coriander


Ground coriander seeds are famous as "dhaniya powder." It is found in both forms-ground and whole. Coriander seeds have a citrusy flavor and make dishes tangy.

2. Cumin


Cumin is an essential spice in cooking. Every recipe starts with adding cumin, either whole or grounded. Black cumin powder is the ground form of this spice that enhances the flavor.

3. Turmeric


Turmeric is the basis of all spices. It blends well with other spices. It gives a bright yellow tint to the dishes. It is used with red curry powder for a perfect recipe.

4. Red Chilies

red chili

Red chilies are also found in both ground and whole form. Indian chili powder and peri peri masala are the by-products of this fiery spice. It gives a spicy flavor to the dishes.

5. Mustard Seeds

Mustard seeds

These are most commonly used for the famous "tadka" to the dishes. These tiny yellow-colored round-shaped seeds are the primary spice in all the recipes.

Summing Up On Beginners Guide to Indian Masalas

When preparing an authentic Indian dish, it is essential to know each spice's appearance, the taste they add, and when and how to employ them in the cooking process.

Spices are used in every recipe. While preparing murgh tikka, fish fry, or any dish, spices are a must. They are sure to elevate the flavor when added at the beginning or as a seasoning.

You can bring a different twist to your meal by combining other spices. Many spices have medicinal properties. They provide superb flavors and aromas. Put a healthy kick in your meals with these flavorful spices.

All of your Indian masala needs can be solved by Alcoeats! We provide a range of spice mixes, including Magic Masala, Peri Peri Masala, Dhaniya Powder, and Indian Chili Powder. Whatever your recipe demands, you will find it here. 


What are the four basic flavors of spices?

There are four basic flavors such as sweet, salty, bitter, and sour. 

What ingredients add flavors to the dishes?

The ingredients like onions, garlic, and scallions add the most flavor with many spices.

Which is called an Umami flavor?

The fifth basic taste sense, Umami, is an exciting term derived from the Japanese language and pronounced as "oo-ma-mee." While commonly referred to as savory, its characteristics could be diagnosed as "meaty," "difficult," or simply as "deliciousness."

Which is known as a sweet flavor enhancer?

Salt is a delicate flavor enhancer. It lowers bitterness and amplifies sweet, sour, and Umami tastes when added in small quantities, making it useful for sweet recipes.

Which is called a natural taste enhancer?

A hint of citrus can be a game changer in elevating a dish's taste - freshly squeezed lemon, orange, or lime juice will do the trick. Moreover, adding a hint of sweetness from fresh, dried, or naturally sweet ingredients like maple syrup can bring out the recipe's flavors. 

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