21 August 2011

August Spice-Rack Challenge: Cumin

Posted in events, food at 11:28 pm by Tricia

The spice rack challenge for August is cumin. As i commented on Mom’s original post, I always associated cumin with Mexican food (you know, chili powder – not to be confused with powdered chiles…). Then i encountered it in various Indian recipes in my favorite cookbook, and learned it’s in many Middle Eastern dishes as well (e.g. the baharat spice mix I used for February’s challenge).

Here are some recipes from my archives that contain cumin:

  • Turnips with Yogurt and Tomato (cumin seeds): I’ve only made it once, so it’s not yet a favorite, but I did make this about a month ago, so it’s current.
  • Spanish-Style Spinach with Chickpeas (ground cumin): This is one of my husband’s favorite dishes. He looks forward to having it when we’ve got lots of spinach in the fridge.
  • Green Beans with Cumin and Fennel (both cumin seeds and ground cumin): my favorite way to cook green beans (if you don’t mind spice with your green beans!).

And here’s a new one:  curtido, a cabbage salad with oregano from El Salvador. The original recipe also called for a cup of shredded crisp lettuce, but I didn’t have any on hand so left it out. For someone who claims she doesn’t like cole slaw, I’m posting quite a few slaw recipes this summer!

Cabbage Slaw with Oregano and Cumin (curtido)

6 cups shredded green cabbage
2 medium carrots, peeled and coarsely grated
1 tsp salt
2 Tab red wine vinegar
1/2 tsp cayenne
1 tsp dried oregano
1 tsp cumin seeds
1 Tab olive oil

Combine all the ingredients in a large bowl and toss well to mix. Set aside for 1 hour or longer, refrigerating if necessary.

Now if I could just find where my chickens wandered off to… I guess they aren’t getting enough cumin in their diets! [joking! We have no chickens.]



  1. Mary said,

    This sounds really interesting—which, after the cabbage overload I experienced last year due to my CSA, is a major compliment! The spinach and green beans recipes also sound wonderful. (I’m always looking for new ways to cook veggies!)

  2. Tricia said,

    I made the curtido for a school pot luck last month and it was a big hit.

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