I love it when my food also has medicinal purposes. Many traditional foods from other cultures (especially Asian countries such as India, Thailand, Vietnam, etc) are purposely spiced with medicinal herbs to aid in digestion and treat common ailments. The following recipe is one of my favorite curry mixtures. It contains herbs that are warming, drying, and anti-bacterial, which aid digestion and help stabilize blood sugar levels. Because the herbs are warming and drying they are great to help treat head and chest colds. Whenever, anyone in our family manifests symptoms of a cold, I always make up a big batch of chicken curry made with homemade bone broth and seasoned with this curry blend.
Here are some of the basic medicinal qualities of the herbs in this blend:
Coriander - Used to ease intestinal complaints.
Cumin - The seeds aid in digestion and help relieve flatulence, colic, and diarrhea.
Turmeric - Used as a digestive aid, antiseptic, expectorant, and anti-inflammatory. In Ayurvedic medicine Turmeric is used to strengthen and warm the body.
Mustard - A warming herb that is a common treatment for lung problems such as coughs and excess phlegm, and to improve digestion.
Chili (Cayenne) - Cayenne is good for so many things; it warms the system, increases blood circulation, relieves pain topically, relieves congestion, aids digestion by stimulating the release of saliva and stomach enzymes, it signals the body to release endorphins, it is thought to strengthen the heart, and so much more.
Fennel - is used to ease indigestion and stomach pains, is a diuretic, and it is one of the ingredients in "Gripe Water". it is used to satisfy the feeling of hunger.
Ginger Root: Used to ease cramps, nausea, morning sickness, and motion sickness. Ginger is warming and decongesting and helps activate the immune system. Improves circulation and is used for cold type imbalances such as poor circulation, colds and flus, respiratory congestion, and sore throats.
Herbal Curry Spice Blend
1part coriander seed
1 part cumin seed
1 part dried turmeric root
1/2 part black mustard seed
1/2 part chile pepper
1/2 part fennel seed
1/2 part dried ginger root
It is best to use freshly ground whole dried herbs for this recipe. However, if you only have powdered herbs, they will work as well.
Usually herbal recipes that are in "parts" are by volume, However, this blend is by weight! I usually use 1/2 an ounce of coriander, cumin, and turmeric, and 1/4 an ounce of black mustard seed, chile pepper, fennel seed, and ginger.
Instructions: Mix herbs together and if using whole herbs, grind into a powder using a mortar and pestle. Store in an air tight container (I use a recycled spice jar) or use right away. Can make into a paste by combining the powdered spices with oil (about 1/4 cup of oil for every 3 Tbsp. of powdered herbs), heat on low heat until the herbs are fragrant, allow to cool, and store in a jar in the fridge.
If you want to use this curry spice blend but do not actually want to make a curry dish you can season rice, quinoa, vegetables,or eggs with it. I also make a breakfast casserole using eggs, bread, milk, and butter and season it with this curry blend.
Notes: I recently received a package of Jiva Organics organic whole cumin seeds to share with my readers. I liked them so much, I also bought their black mustard seeds and their turmeric powder. The Jiva Organic spices seem to be high quality - they smell wonderful, they have a great color to them, they do not have any artificial flavors or preservatives, and they are organic.They are way more flavorful and more aromatic than any of the spices that I usually purchase locally (our selection of organic spices around here are very slim). I wish I could send the scent of these cumin seeds through the computer to you! I like that they are sold on Amazon and have free prime shipping. Sorry I didn't take a picture of the mustard seeds or the turmeric powder - I want to get this post written before my kids wake up from their nap!
Disclaimer: All information on Erickson and Co. is meant for educational and informational purposes only. The statements on this website have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. Products and information are not intended to diagnose, cure, treat, or prevent any disease. Readers are advised to do their own research and make decisions with their healthcare provider. If you are pregnant, nursing, have a medical condition, or are taking any medication, please consult your healthcare provider.
I received the Jiva Organics Cumin Seeds mentioned above for free using Tomoson.com. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers.