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Date de création : 17.06.2011
Dernière mise à jour : 16.08.2013
401 articles

Difference between Cumin Seeds and Ground Cumin

Publié le 22/05/2012 à 10:33 par foodadditives Tags : foochem food additives you

Cumin Seeds Vs Ground Cumin
Here we will discuss the difference between cumin seeds and ground cumin.

As we all know, cumin is a very important spice that is an essential ingredient in South East Asian cooking, particularly Indian cuisine. A spicy curry or a bowl of Mexican chili will never taste as mouth-watering without this aromatic spice. Cumin is a spice that is essential for flavoring spicy curries. Cumin is the dried seed of a flowering plant that flowers annually and belongs to the parsley family. It is highly aromatic and has a slightly bitter taste with a nutty flavor. Cumin seeds come in three colors, black, amber and white with black being the most widely used. Cumin seeds are food additives, also used for imparting a distinct and complex flavor to certain high-end gourmet cheeses. Some recipes call for ground cumin which is prepared from cumin seeds.

Difference between Cumin Seeds and Ground Cumin
The cumin seeds have a striped pattern and are boat shaped that tapers at both ends. They are pungent and slightly bitter with a rather sharp taste. As it is quite a powerful spice, it should be used sparingly in dishes as too much of cumin can overpower the entire dish. It should be stored in air tight containers and placed in a cool dry place like your pantry away from sunlight. Cumin seeds can be stored in this way for up to six weeks in this way and they can be used whole for tempering lentil dishes or for flavoring soups and stews. The best way to use whole cumin seeds is to dry roast the seeds in a pan to bring out its unique taste and aroma. Dry roasting the cumin seeds will help in releasing the oils in the seeds and thus it will intensify the flavor. If you are going to use cumin seeds for tempering, then you need to first dry roast the cumin seeds. Then take a small pan and heat some vegetable oil. Once the oil has just started smoking, remove pan from heat and fry the cumin seeds with other whole spices like mustard and fenugreek. Pour this oil along with the spices into your soups and stews to give a whole new flavor dimension to it.

Ground cumin and seeds ingredient can be brought in most stores but it is best to ground some of your own from cumin seeds. Ground cumin has a very intense nutty flavor and a small amount goes a long way. Ground cumin should also be stored in air tight bottles away from heat and sunlight. Ground cumin does not store as well as cumin seeds and you can keep them up to 6 to 8 weeks. After this the ground cumin begins to lose its flavor and aroma and thus becomes quit useless as a spice.

Converting Cumin Seeds to Ground Cumin
One of the advantages of ground cumin is that it can be used for flavoring soups and curries and a bit of ground cumin is enough for a dish. It is a good idea to grind your own cumin powder from cumin seeds and here is the procedure. For making ground cumin you need to heat a skillet on high heat. Now roast the cumin seeds in the skillet at a low heat by stirring it continuously with a wooden spoon. When the cumin seeds changes color to a darker hue and you get a mild aroma transfer the seeds to a bowl. Take care not to over roast the cumin seeds or it will turn bitter. When the roasted cumin seeds have cooled down grind them in a mortar and pestle until you get a very fine powdery texture.

Some cumin seeds health benefits are its ability to improve digestion and prevent flatulence. In addition to this cumin seeds can help to cure stomach ache and heart burn and its oil foochem acts as a sedative for curing insomnia. Thus there are many benefits of consuming cumin seeds besides its culinary uses. Whether you use whole cumin seeds or ground cumin, this spice has the ability to enhance the flavor of your dish.

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