The famous Chettinad Masala from Tamil Nadu is famous for its use of spices is considered as the spiciest and most flavorful spice mix which is actually the cuisine of the community called Chettiyars. The freshly ground spices along with coconut and curry leaves make make Chettinad cuisine stand apart. The most important ingredient for the masala from the state of Tamil Nadu is Dagad phool/ Stone flower or Kalpasi
What is Kalpasi or Dagad Phool or stone flower?
Kalpasi / Stone Flower/ Dagad Phool, Kalpasi has shades of black, gray, white and pale green in it. You won’t be able to get its fragrance if smelled raw. However, Kalpasi releases a very strong aroma when tempered for curries and gravies. The fragrance is something close to what star anise releases when tempered in hot oil, but stronger than that.
Tips Poppy seeds contribute to the thickness of the sauce/gravy, you may skip it if it’s not available or if you do not like them. Kapok buds and black stone flower are the most essential spices in this recipe, try not to skip them. I have used spicier red chilies, increase the quantity if you are using Kashmiri chilies or any mild variety chilies. Roast spices on medium-low flame, keep stirring to avoid burning of spices. This spice curry powder can be stored for up to 3-4 months. You may substitute desiccated coconut with coconut powder or dry coconut flakes. Alternatively, you may skip desiccated coconut in this recipe, instead add coconut powder in the sauce/gravy while cooking. This masala powder you use it for all type of veg & non veg curries.
Chettinad Masala Powder | Garam Masala Powder
Use a thick bottomed pan over a slow flame and dry roast all the spices in the order above until nice aroma comes. This will take about 4-5 minutes. Turn off the flame
Allow them to cool.
Transfer to a mixer-jar and grind until you get a fine powder.
Store the Chettinad masala powder in an airtight container and can be used for up to 3-4 months.
- Its optional to add coconut also, you may add the coconut while cooking the curry.