Thursday, 7 June 2012 - , , 0 comments

CUPBOARD LOVE : Asafoetida


As you know, I'm always on the look out for interesting new flavours. This is a really unusual one, by name and by nature! 

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Asafoetida is a strange spice which definitely improves with cooking. It originates from a resin-like gum extracted from the sap in the roots and stem of the plant. This is then dried, ground and used a spice.
This Schwartz variety is mixed with turmeric and rice flour. I'm only just getting to grips with it, but am finding, used sparingly, that it is a great seasoning for stir fries or curries.
It works particularly well with my 
SMASH & GRAB:"When All Else Fails"... Garlic, Cauliflower and Broccoli recipe, as the rice flour helps to thicken the cooking liquid slightly. I literally shake a tiny amount into the pan when I am frying the garlic and cauliflower.

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Asafoetida has to be fried to bring out its good qualities. Uncooked, it has a pungent and not particularly pleasant aroma. Once heated, however, it takes on a garlicky/onion flavour. Traditionally, it is used in Indian vegetarian dishes such as dhal, to balance out salty and sour flavours.

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Another great quality of Asafoetida is that it is said to reduce flatulence- very useful when eating lots of veggies!

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