My trip to India is one of the most memorable journeys I have ever been on. The people, the colors, the flavors, the noises. You just can’t put India into words. But the food was by far the best of all. The aromatic spices that permeate every meal still linger in my memory. Today’s recipe is my dedication to India: Indian Spiced Ghee.
What is ghee?
Ghee is clarified butter that has it’s origins in India. It is butter that has been heated so that the water and milk solids are removed, leaving golden, delicious butter fat. What makes ghee so wonderful is that it is very digestible because the casein and milk solids are gone. It is also very heat stable so makes for a great cooking fat.
Adding a little Indian flavor to your foods is so easy with this fragrant ghee. Use it to saute your veggies in. Spread it on your favorite savory baked goods. Season your soups with it. Have you ever had Indian spiced scrambled eggs? YUM!
The recipe I am sharing is made with pre-made ghee. I make my own ghee but I make 8-10 pounds at a time as it is our fat of choice. So I like to add my spices to a small amount of my ghee after I have made it. Feel free to add the spices to your butter if you want to make your ghee and spice it up at the same time. (See recipe here to make your own ghee) OR you can buy good quality ghee HERE.
The most important thing with making infused ghee is to NOT burn the ghee. I use a heavy bottom pot on the lowest setting so my ghee stays warm but never burns. Luckily one of my burners on my stove top is super LOW. Using a flame tamer can also help if you have a powerful stove top.
Ghee is good for up to a month out on the counter top and 6 months to a year in the fridge (depending on who you ask.)
A word about spices:
The spices in this infused ghee are not just for flavor. The people of India have long known about the amazing healing properties of spices. Many of the spices used in Indian cooking aid with digestion and gas. Some have antibacterial, antiviral, and anti-inflammatory properties. Others are amazing antioxidants that help fight of disease and aging. Here is what I use in my Indian Spiced Ghee:
- Cumin: soothes and tones the stomach, helps with gas, stimulates appetite.
- Coriander: aids absorption, helps with gas, and is detoxifying.
- Turmeric: anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties. (read more HERE about the health benefits of turmeric)
- Fennel: soothes the digestive system, helps with gas, and aids with indigestion.
- Ginger: soothes and tones the stomach, improves circulation ,and boosts immune system.
- Mustard Seed: helps with gas and a good analgesic.
- Cinnamon: blood sugar regulation, detoxifying, and may help with arthritic pain.
- Cardamom: promotes digestion, adds sweetness, and is good for the heart.
- Gently heat ¼ cup ghee in a heavy bottom pan on LOW-MEDIUM.
- Once melted, add mustard and cumin seeds and turn down heat to LOW. Allow to cook for 3-4 minutes, stirring once in a while.
- Meanwhile place rest of spices in a small bowl.
- Add spice mix to pot and continue to cook on LOW for 2-3 minutes, stirring occasionally. The spices will become fragrant.
- Pour in the rest of the ghee and allow to warm on LOW for 20 minutes, uncovered. Be sure that it is very LOW. The ghee should not bubble in any way. The low heat is just to help the spices infuse.
- Remove from heat and allow to cool for 30 minutes.
- Strain with a fine mesh strainer into a glass jar. Enjoy!