With its warm, earthy flavour and pungent aroma, this humble-looking spice really brings dishes to life. Here’s how – and why – to get more cumin going on…
Cumin comes from Egypt and the Middle East but features in food from all over the world, especially Indian and Mexican. It’s the seed of the cumin plant that’s used for cooking; most often light brown in colour, but sometimes black, green or white.
Why should you get excited for cumin? Not only does it give great flavour, it has a healthy side too. It’s rich in potassium, iron and zinc and can help digestion and relieve wind – a welcome bonus to any meal!
Pick up cumin in the spice aisle as either whole seeds (which keep for about a year) or ground into a powder (good for about six months). Both need to be kept in a tightly sealed jar or container and stored in a cool, dry and dark place.
Cumin over for snacks
Use this all-rounder spice to liven up a wide range of dishes. Start with simple snacks and sides like this tasty smashed cucumber salad with lemon and cumin, perfect for your next picnic.
This creamy hummus with cumin takes a bit more effort than popping a tub of the regular stuff in your shopping basket but it’s worth it for the amazing flavour and sense of achievement.
The thyme, cumin and orange butter in this vegspirational recipe transforms the taste of plain ol’ carrots, making them much more than just a side serving.
Great for grilling
Toasting or grilling cumin releases those sweet aromas and smoky flavours. This cumin and lime chicken tastes incredible and the recipe includes some great grilling tips.
Big flavour feasts
If you’re in a hurry for curry, you can’t go far wrong with this Seychelles fish curry. Less than 30 minutes prep, a whole bunch of spices (including a good shake of cumin), a quick cook and you’ll be tucking in.
With a bit more time on your hands (scratch that – a lot more) this slow-roasted lamb shoulder with cumin yogurt and mint salsa delivers. And that cumin yoghurt would also work wonders with so many other dishes.
Thanks to its smoky, sweet flavour, cumin’s good for pud too. Give this Moroccan chocolate mousse a whirl – as easy as it is delish.
And spice up movie night with this indulgent Mexican chocolate popcorn. It’s popcorn but drizzled with a heavenly spiced chocolate sauce – oh mama!
Cumin then – it’s time to get cooking…