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The Spiceries: Goda Masala a.k.a The Sweet One


“Once you get a spice in your home, you have it forever. Women never throw out spices. The Egyptians were buried with their spices. I know which one I’m taking with me when I go”

Erma Bombeck

For me, it is definitely this one. Goda Masala

Goda Masala: The Sweet One

Goda means sweet and masala means a combination of spices.Hence, the sweet one. It is a staple spice in every Maharashtrian kitchen like mine. There is no sugar, honey or jaggery in this. So why is it called sweet? Well, because this one is not pungent like his brother ” The Garam Masala”.

This spice is a beautiful union of a number of spices. Fragrant, deep brown and strong bodied this one is often used for vegetarian delicacies like dal and vegetables while his brother is mostly used in meat preparations. Another difference is the proportion of black pepper used. The Goda masala contains a very small amount of black pepper, whereas the Garam Masala is based on the heat of the black pepper itself.

The best part about this Goda masala is that the proportion of spices changes from family to family. There is no one perfect recipe for this one. Why is it the best part? Because it makes each one unique and special.

Memories of Goda Masala

Summer afternoons used to be aai’s favourite time to make spices. Mainly because we were napping. :p . However, I remember the aromas: earthy and mesmerising. Each spice was dry roasted on a low flame to intensify the flavour.

The coriander seeds first, then the cumin, followed by the sesame seeds and so on. Each one mounted on top of the other in a huge plate to cool down after the roasting. Then grinding it in the mixer followed by storing. Patiently waiting for it to cool down completely and then using a ladle to scoop it in washed and sun dried mason jars. The bouquet of Goda Masala is enough to make you tummy rumble with hunger. My aajee (grand mom) who was also our neighbour used to stop by asking my mom if she was making masala? Her face beaming with pride as she watched her ardent daughter recreate her masala. On grinding this you will notice it is not a smooth powder, it is more like a sand texture and is evidently darker than garam masala.

Know one thing for sure, when you make this masala, everyone around you will know it too . Make a bigger batch as you will definitely have people asking you for some. I used to picture my mom as a sorcerer wearing a tall and pointy hat and making magic potions and fairy dust.

She still insists on sending me the Goda Masala all the way from India because.. well she is a mom. If stored in a dry, airtight container, this spice can last up to 6 months. It may get a little clumpy but that happens only because it has sesame seeds which keep on producing oil.

Cooking with Goda Masala

Whenever I use Goda Masala, I miss my aai. This smell reminds me of my mother. It’s warm, comforting and makes food taste delicious. It is the reason why my dals and vegetables are complimented on numerous occasions. I cannot live without this spice. Now, that we have spoken about three of the many Indian spices in The Spiceries, let’s see how I use them. I have made a small 5-minute cooking video of my favourite weekly staple ‘Black Eyed Peas’ using the spices we discussed. In Marathi, we call it ‘Chowlichi Usal’.

It is my mom’s recipe for cooking black eyed peas Indian style. My youtube channel is AtHomewithHewitt Blog .

I hope you enjoy watching the video. Please let me know your feedback in the comment section below. Take care.




4 thoughts on “The Spiceries: Goda Masala a.k.a The Sweet One

  1. Really very informative. And the usal looked delicious. Will definitely make it accordingly.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Really nice, Kamini. The scent of the spices was wafting out of my laptop screen.

    Liked by 2 people

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