About Garam masala
Wikipedia Article About Garam Masala on Wikipedia
Garam masala (गरम मसाला in Hindi) is a blend of dry-roasted ground spices common in Pakistani/Indian cuisine, whose literal meaning is 'hot spices'. There are many variants: most traditional mixes use just cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg (and/or mace), black pepper and green cardamom seed or black cardamom pods. Many commercial mixtures may include more of other less expensive spices and may contain dried red chili peppers, dried garlic, ginger powder, sesame, mustard seeds, turmeric, coriander, cloves, black pepper, cardamom, cinnamon, bay leaves, cumin, nutmeg, and fennel. While commercial garam masala preparations can be bought ready ground, it does not keep well, and soon loses its aroma. It is much better to buy the whole spices, which keep fresh much longer, and to grind them when needed using a pestle or electric coffee grinder.
Garam masala can be used during cooking, but unlike many spices, it is often added at the end of cooking, so that the full aroma is not lost. Garam masala is not "hot" in the sense that chilis are, but is fairly pungent.