The base for much Indian cooking, there are many recipes for garam masala. In this one, use either bleached or green cardamons. Garam masala should keep for up to six months in an airtight jar.


  • tablespoons whole cardamon pods
  • 5 tablespoons whole coriander seeds
  • 1 tablespoon whole cumin seeds
  • tablespoons whole cloves
  • 6 tablespoons black peppercorns


Remove the seeds from the cardamons, then put them on a baking tray with the remaining spices. Bake in a preheated oven, 240°C/475°F (gas mark 9), for 10 minutes, then allow to cool.

Grind to a fine powder using a pestle and mortar, or whizz in an electric coffee or spice grinder. Store in a jar with a tight-fitting lid for 3–6 months.