13 July, 2013

How to make Bhuna Jeera Powder (Roasted Cumin Seeds Powder)

Aromatic. Easy to make. Indispensible.
Powdered roasted cumin
 Roasted cumin seed powder is one of those things a kitchen should never be without.

Roasted Cumin
The cumin powder that is commercially available is usually of un-roasted cumin.
Cumin Seeds
That's easily made too at home - so much fresher and more fragrant - by simply grinding the cumin seeds into a powder (coarse or rough as desired) in the mixie jar.

For the roasted version, it's best to make it in small batches since the aroma dissipates over time.

That could mean even as little as half a teaspoon or as much as say 2 tablespoons or more, which can keep in an airtight jar for a week or longer. I've even stored it for a month or more, at times!

Place the seeds in a pan, skillet, wok or tempering ladle, and roast over a low-medium flame.
Don't forget to keep constantly stirring/tossing, till the seeds are nicely browned and start to crackle and splutter.

Take it off the heat, cool, and powder using any of the methods below.

Inhale deeply when you do, because the fragrant aroma of freshly ground bhuna jeera is unbelievable.

Powdering Method 1: Using a rolling pin.
Place the roasted jeera on a firm, flat surface, my preferred one is the chakla (the flat round stone or wood platform which is used to make rotis).

Use the belan (rolling pin) to easily crush the seeds by rolling it over while pressing down.
The powder will usually be a little coarse which lends a distinct and unique flavour.

Powdering Method 2: Using a pestle and mortar (imam dasta).
Simply pound it.

Again, the powder will be a little coarse. This is a good thing, the texture makes the flavour pop!

Powdering Method 3: In a mixie jar.
Run it in the smallest (spice/chutney) jar.

A quick whizz is all it needs.
The powder will be finer than by the other methods. Best for use in drinks like Aam Panna and Jaljeera!
Let it cool.

Store in an airtight jar. A sprinkle-cap top would make it very handy to use!


  1. I didn't know a motar and pestle were called imam dasta. I learnt something besides making bhuna jeera powder.

    1. Such a nice sounding word, isn't it? I must try to use it more often. (And resist following the lead of certain young individuals who refer to it as the "pound-er".) ;)



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