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Madras Curry Powder


  • 8tablespoons coriander seeds
  • 6tablespoons cumin seeds
  • 1tablespoon mustard seeds
  • 1tablespoon fennel seed
  • 4tablespoons ground cinnamon
  • 8tablespoons peppercorns
  • 1tablespoon ground nutmeg
  • 1tablespoon whole cloves
  • 2tablespoons ground cardamom
  • 2tablespoons turmeric
  • 2tablespoons ground ginger
  • 1tablespoon cayenne (or less if less heat is desired)


  • In a dry skillet over very low heat, place the coriander, cumin, mustard and fennel seeds. Roast the seeds gently, shaking the pan occasionally, until they begin to pop. When about half the seeds have popped, add the cinnamon, peppercorns, nutmeg, cloves, cardamom, turmeric, ginger and cayenne.
  • Continue to heat and stir gently until the mixture is quite hot but not burnt. Pour into a dry blender or food processor, or use a mortar and pestle. Grind into a fine powder. Pour into a clean, dry jar, seal, and let it cool before using.


  • umisa

    this is amazing! I use it all the time! thanks!

  • Maito

    WOW! I have never made my own curry powder and was surprised at the phenomenal flavor this packed when we taste-tested this with what I buy from the Indian store. The store bought had no flavor at all by comparison. For DH’s taste I used less of the peppers and non-Indian spices. Grinding this in a coffee grinder (just for spices) was the perfect way to go. A quarter recipe made almost a 1/2 cup, so that will last a while. Thanks Sharon, for opening my eyes!

  • MarraMamba

    Fabulous flavor, this was a nice simple recipe for homemade powder, i liked the heat so used the full cayenned. Also did cut the recipe to a 1/4. Used in Ground Beef Curry (Kima Curry)

  • Sweet Baboo

    Well, there will be no going back to buying grocery store curry powder now that I have made this recipe! It has an amazing aroma and flavour. I took a reviewer’s suggestion of eliminating the cayenne, and adding it to taste for individual recipes, added 1 TBSP fenugreek seeds, reduced the cloves to 1 tsp, and added 2 TBSP curry leaves.

  • Escoffier Pepin

    Close, but not quite. While Madras style curries are known to be very fragrant with sweet spices, this sweetness is always balanced with pungent and earthy spices. This recipe has waaaaaaaaay too much cinnamon and other spices, namely ginger and cardamon. The recipe is also missing Fenugreek, which is a must for Madras style curry. Here are my suggestions to correct the above:
    1. Reduce the cinnamon to 2 Tbsp
    2. Increase Cumin Seeds to 8 Tbsp
    3. Add Fenugreek Seeds – 2 Tbsp
    4. Instead of powdered Cardamom, use 2 Tbsp of whole cardamom. This will reduce the overall amount once it is ground, and drastically improve flavor.
    5. Reduce ground ginger to 1 Tbsp. Since most curries contain fresh ginger, this reduction is essential. Also, fresh ginger is far superior.

    This will yield a spice mixture that will not only be more balanced and authentic, but it will certainly liven up any dish that you may but on to stew. ENJOY!

  • Goody2shz

    This was good but it doesn’t really look or taste like the kind of curry powder I am used to. It tasted more like a Moroccan seasoning blend and was dark brown while every curry powder I’ve ever seen is orangey-yellow. I checked the ingredients on my purchased bottle of madras curry powder and added more of certain ingredients to try to duplicate it; after that it started to taste more like what I’m used to but still not like a true curry powder. Don’t get me wrong, I did like this blend; just wasn’t what I was expecting.

  • Brooke the Cook in WI

    Wow – I have never made a spice before and I’m so glad this is the one I chose to tackle that project! I made just a .125 recipe and used 1t, but I have lots leftover for another time. I added about double the amount of cayenne, as we like it hot and it had a little kick… it was also sweet at the same time which is just how I like my curry. It took a very long time for the seeds to pop, I wonder if I should have had a higher heat. Also I used my food processor and found that it took a very long time before it became a fine powder – many many minutes. Made for ZWT4 Spice it Up challenge.

  • Gerry

    Love home made spice and seasonings and this one is no exception. Made as posted and used it in the making of Cashew Chicken Curry – it has been added to my collection.

  • Che~Sara`

    amazing!!!! THANKS for posting this recipe!

  • CaliforniaJan

    Wonderful aroma as this heated in the pan. I made for ZWT4’s trip to Africa and used it in the Spice It Up Challenge. I also made a quarter and next time I’d cut the cayenne…it was great but a little too much zing for me!