My Must Have

Daily Prompt: Ingredients
What’s the one item in your kitchen you can’t possibly cook without? A spice, your grandma’s measuring cup, instant ramen — what’s your magic ingredient, and why?


There are three ingredients I can’t cook without them. I will feel lost without them in my kitchen. The first one:
Cumin seeds. It’s name is Zeera in Pushto and Urdu.


Those tiny seeds are the mainstay of most of my dishes — rice, meat and vegetables. If I don’t have them in my cupboard, I can tell you, I will feel doomed.

The second one, which is as important are green Chillies.


In Urdu they are called Sabz Mirch and in Pushto Sheen Marchakay.
I love them. I take three or four, (depending upon the dish to be cooked) and add them whole to whatever is cooking in the pot. To some dishes I add them when I am at the sautéing stage. You have to make a little slit at their bottoms so that they don’t plop out of the pan, when they are being fried.

I add them to rice when the water is boiling. I love their flavor. Sometimes I add them to the rice when it has absorbed the water and cover the pot with the heat turned to the lowest setting. The rice imbibes it’s taste.

The third ingredient I can’t do without are Cloves. They are a must for rice dishes except when you are cooking a Chinese rice dish.


I use them as whole when I am cooking rice. The aroma and smell which spreads through the house is heavenly.
My nose definitely appreciates the smell, aroma and taste of my most loved ingredients.

What are yours?

12 thoughts on “My Must Have”

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