The Must Haves of Indian Cooking

April 20, 2015

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The Must Haves of Indian Cooking

While certain other cuisines may stress more on the slicing and dicing, Indian cuisine focuses more on spicing. For it is true that spices are the key to successful Indian cooking. Having said that, there are a whole lot of spices to deal with when it comes to preparing an Indian meal.

However, do not be intimidated by this prospect for with a few handy tips most of the mysteries of Indian spices and cooking techniques can be unshrouded allowing you to cook your favorite Indian food at home.

Regarding spices there are two usual inaccuracies that can make or break the resulting dish. For many people, Indian spices can be scary so they will often choose to put too little when making a dish. This will simply result in the dish not having enough flavor and becoming bland to taste. However, on the other hand using too many spices will likely make a dish too hot and flavorful to handle, once again rendering an undesirable effect. The equilibrium lies in between where spices are added in the right quantity to enhance the food’s flavoring, and not completely overwhelm it.

For novice cooks, the best option is to follow the recipes closely and once they have mastered an understanding of spice usage, they can feel freer to experiment with them.

Because some of the recipes may display a number of steps for the cooking process, it is best to have all cooking tools ready before beginning to cook. This preparatory step is also important as many of the dishes are cooked at a high temperature and there just won’t be any time to go around looking for ingredients or tools with the dish placed on the stovetop. If everything is not present on hand, the chances of burning your dish greatly multiply.

Some of the essentials that are always needed for making Indian food can include the following:

  • Heavy pots and pans: Indian cooking basics dictate that there should be at least a few heavy pots and pans in the kitchen. As mentioned earlier, most cooking will be done on high heat, so the heavier and more solid the pan, the better.
  • Coffee grinder: This naturally becomes a basic when you need to grind the spices. Although Indian spices can also be bought prepackaged, some cooks may prefer to grind their own fresh spices in the kitchen. Plus experts always stress the difference between freshly ground spices as opposed to store bought ones.
  • Slow cooker: Some traditional Indian dishes like dal or lentils are prepared by slow cooking. To get good results, it is handy to have a quality slow cooker on hand.
  • Flat frying pan: Known as tava, this Indian flat frying pan is needed for making Indian flat bread or roti. This cooking utensil is slightly rounded at the bottom and is ideal for making chapatti, dosa and parathas.
  • Good quality blender: Since chutneys are integral sides to any Indian meal, investing in a durable blender is recommended. This will make the task of preparing quick and efficient chutneys, rather than having to do the hard work manually.


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