Paradise Valley Masala Mix

Paradise Valley Masala Mix
(by Richard, Durban correspondent)

Lets start off by saying that I make a traditional Masala without the  chillies, but have modified it to extend the bite by looking further  East. Like all masalas, it’s very individual and the combination I enjoy. Szechuan peppers have an affinity for  chilli and affect the palate, accentuating the flavour and bite of the chilli, so that’s become my secret ingredient over the years. Feel free to experiment.

Here’s my concoction…

• 5 pods 2ml white cardamon (Elachi)
• 4-5 pods black cardamon (Black Elcha/Barra Elachi)
• 3 leaves finely chopped fresh Bay leaves
• 2 x 2,5 cm cinnamon sticks (or +/- 0.75 tsp powdered)

• 40 ml coriander seeds
• 10 ml fresh ginger finely chopped (or 1.5 tsp of ginger powder) 

• 12-14 whole cloves (or +/- 0.75 tsp clove powder)
• 7.5 ml black cumin seeds (Shajeera)

• 15 ml cumin seeds (Jeera)
• 40 ml coriander seeds
• 10 ml fresh Ginger finely chopped (or 1.5 tsp of ginger powder) 

• 15 ml mixed pepper corns
• 10 ml Szechuan peppers
• 3 ml mustard seed.

Heat a heavy based pan or skillet and gently dry roast all the ingredients until they darken. (do this very slowly and don’t burn it). Allow to cool. Husk the cardamon pods and place the seeds back with the other ingredients. Grind all to a fine powder (use a clean coffee grinder). Store in an airtight container in a cool cupboard.

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