Suggested uses: add Steenbergs organic cumin to a variety of dishes, from curries (where it is a key ingredient) to chillis. It’s delicious in vegetable casseroles and is fantastic with cabbage, just throw a few seeds on after cooking. For an extra special treat, make your own fresh organic cumin powder by toasting some Steenbergs organic cumin seeds and crushing them in a pestle and mortar.
Cumin plants, Cuminum cyminum, are small, delicate looking annuals with slender branched stems that grow to 60cm high (24 inches), which somehow do not seem quite right for such an earthy, robustly flavoured spice. Because of their weakness, the stems are weighed down by the cumin fruit that follow the tiny, pink flowers. Cumin leaves are deep green, frond-like and divided into long, narrow segments similar to fennel leaves. Cumin seeds are 4-5mm in length (¼ inch). Cumin seeds are pretty straight with only a slight curve, thin at 1-2mm (⅛ inch) thick, with a colour that ranges from a pale grey-brown through to a khaki. If you look closely, each seed has 9 fine ridges running along its length and a hair-like, tail or flagella that is 2mm (⅛ inch) long at one end. Cumin plants are harvested for the seeds when the plant has finished flowering and before the ripe fruits fall. The stems are scythed down, then hung in the shade to dry, or sometimes just cut and left to dry. They are threshed then rubbed to remove most of the fine flagella tails. The aroma of cumin seeds are pungent, warm, earthy, lingering and sweet, with the earthiness the most predominant aroma and flavour. To these aromas, the flavour profile has a slightly bitter warmth, which can sometimes become rather too bitter.
Cumin has a very distinctive earthy warmth, which is often overlayed with a nutty character through dry roasting. Cumin is used extensively in Middle Eastern cuisine and is characteristic of Indian curries, but is also found in Mexican dishes and I think it works really well in a homemade burger.
- Flavours: Earthy
- Cuisines: African, Indian, Middle Eastern
- Ingredient features: Organic, Salt free, Sugar free, Vegan
- Values per 100g:
- Energy 348kCal; 1480kJ
- Fat 0.6g
- Carbohydrates 68.5g
- Protein 17.3g
- Values per 2g teaspoon:
- Energy 7kCal; 30kJ
- Fat 0.0g
- Carbohydrates 1.4g
- Protein 0.3g
We also stock Steenbergs Organic Cumin Powder