Real World Gardener Spice it Up with Cumin Seeds

January 26th, 2015

 REAL WORLD GARDENER Wed. 5pm 2RRR 88.5fm Sydney, streaming live at and Across Australia on the Community Radio Network.<?xml:namespace prefix = "o" />


Real World Gardener is funded by the Community Broadcasting Foundation (CBF).

The complete CRN edition of RWG is available on , just click on 2RRR to find this week’s edition. The new theme is sung by Harry Hughes from his album Songs of the Garden. You can hear samples of the album from the website


with Ian Hemphill from

How old are those spices in your kitchen cupboard?

Five years, ten years, or even older?

Are they any good if they’re that old?

Cumin seeds.

Well with this next spice, if it doesn’t have a strong and spicy-sweet aroma, then you’d better chuck it out.

Cumin is the classic north Indian seed spice but it has a much wider used than curry.

Cumin is a key element in Mexican and Egyptian food and a key ingredient in Dukka - an Egyptian spice mix you can use to dip your bread into. This mix consists of seeds of cumin, coriander, and sesame as well as almonds or hazelnuts and sumac. There are other variations.

Other places where you may find cumin is in sweet shortbread biscuits, Dutch Leyden cheese and in pickling.

Spices and herbs will keep for a long time if you store them properly.

Whole spices can last 4 years!

Ground spices like mustard can last for 2-3 years and you can use them in lots of different recipes like making your own tasty homemade salad dressings.

Herbs last anywhere from 1-3 years, depending on the herb.

Cumin seeds and cumin powder

So if you don’t use Cumin seed that much, buy it whole rather than powdered, and grind it up yourself either using an electric grinder or by hand with a mortar and pestle.

If you have any questions about cumin or have a great recipe, send it in to 2RRR P.O. Box 644 Gladesville NSW 1675.

Find out what cumin can be used in besides curries by listening to the podcast.

Podbean App

Play this podcast on Podbean App