When I first heard the name, I was wondering what a bucket (Balti in Hindi/Urdu) has to do with a masala. Later when I looked up in Wiki came to know that this has further evolved into being known closer to a kadai or wok. Another school of thought is that the Balti masala or Balti style of cooking has its origins in the North Pakisthan-Kashmir Belt. In UK Balti Cuisine refers to the cuisine from the above area. I believe that in the city of Birmingham UK, there are some designated Balti Houses(Restaurants). But to me it means a curry made in a wok with some spices!

I came across this masala in Raghavan Iyer's 660 Curries when I was doing the previous Blogging Marathon. I am so impressed with this masala that I have now replaced the store bought Garam masala with this Balti masala in my cooking. Trust me, it makes a fine substitute for garam masala.
So for Day 2 of this edition of BM#8, here is the aromatic Balti masala from the snow capped mountains of Kashmir and Pakistan..

Balti Masala

Ingredients - 

Fennel seeds / Sonf 2 tsp
Coriander seeds / Dhania 2 tsp
Cumin / Jeera 1 tsp
Mustard seeds 1 tsp
Cloves 1/2 tsp
Black cardamom seeds 1/2 tsp (Badi Elaichi)
Nigella seeds / Kalonji 1/2 tsp
Dried Bay leaves 3 
Cinnamon 6 inch stick broken into small bits
Red Chilli Powder 2 tsp
Ground Nutmeg / Jajikai 1/2 tsp

Balti Masala

Method Of Preparation - 

Roast all the ingredients (except the red chilli powder and nutmeg) until they are highly fragrant. Cool them and powder them adding the red chilli powder and nutmeg powder. Store in an airtight container for future use.

Check to see what my fellow marathoners are up to in this edition of BM #8.

Sending to Srivalli's Condiment Mela and Desisoccermom's B2B - Dry spice powders.

Preparation Time 15 min
Makes 1/3 cup
Posted by Harini on Wednesday, August 24, 2011


  1. The masala sounds new to me...nice click

  2. Unknown Says:
  3. I have a book which has quite a few balti dishes....this masala looks good!

  4. Sobha Shyam Says:
  5. i too was wondering abt the name of the masala...;)..this masala sounds great n flavourful..

  6. Priya Suresh Says:
  7. Flavourful spice powder,thanks for sharing..

  8. Unknown Says:
  9. wow, that is a lot of things going on in this masala, I am sure it tastes superb :)

  10. Kalyani Says:
  11. looks like a spicy powder ......

  12. Suma Gandlur Says:
  13. Flavorful blend of spices.
    I use north Indian spice powders limitedly as my husband hates any spice concoctions. :)

  14. Mugdha Says:
  15. the masala sounds flavourful and tempting..

  16. Unknown Says:
  17. I'm already feeling the aroma of masala... Sure I'm making it for my kitchen..

  18. Uma Says:
  19. mmm.looks so delicious and aromatic.

  20. Pavani Says:
  21. Spicy masala powder. Love the deep color, I'm sure it is very flavorful.

  22. Masala looks to be very flavorful.

    Hamaree Rasoi

  23. Unknown Says:
  24. Sounds different!!!Beautiful clicks.

  25. Anonymous Says:
  26. this looks nice and flavorful


  27. wow hv not heard abt this masala looks so aromatic..

  28. Something new and nice

  29. Vardhini Says:
  30. Masala looks flavorful .. thx for sharing.

    Check out my 100th post giveaway.
    Current Event: Herbs and Flowers - Garlic

  31. Srivalli Says:
  32. Looks very aromatic Harini..you are not sending this for the mela??..:(

  33. i love different garam masalas...this one needs to b tried asap....will post my version sometime...

  34. Jane Says:
  35. Motivates me to try and make some. Looks so good!

  36. Deeksha Says:
  37. Homemade masala sounds fresh and flavorful...

  38. jayasree Says:
  39. I have all the ingredients...Will make this soon. Thanks for sharing.

  40. I have heard this name for the first time, poor me, 1 life and so much more to learn, when are you posting a recipe using this masala?

  41. As a substitute for Garam Masala? Lovely! I have always wanted to make Lamb dishes with this masala. Will make this at home for sure!

  42. That's a great masala to know of. I've often had balti dishes in restaurants- never realized it was all because of a masala!

  43. Prathima Rao Says:
  44. The masala looks so aromatic!! Thx for the suggestion to replace GM with this homemade, fresh masal..I recently bought 660 curries too & its a treasure book of all delicious recipes...Will try this out...
    Prathima Rao
    Prats Corner

  45. Archana Says:
  46. bookmarked. I will also replace my garam masala with this one.

    Do check out my event and send me your entries.

  47. Usha Says:
  48. It is a flavorful masala!

  49. Nice.. Nice.. looks really amazing :)
    Indian Cuisine

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