A spice odyssey called Asian cooking. From The Times:
Star anise, fennel, cloves, cinnamon, pepper, red chillies, turmeric, cumin and coriander – these spices are the workhorses of any Indian kitchen, matched in endless combinations and accessorised with other aromatics at will. Descended from the celebrated cuisine of the Mughal empire, the cuisine of North India, Pakistan and Bangladesh is known for its uncompromisingly rich sauces, laced liberally with saffron and ground and whole spices – notably cumin, cardamom and cinnamon.
In the lighter dishes of the predominantly vegetarian Indian south cumin, cardamom and cinnamon also feature lavishly, alongside cloves, coriander and tamarind, the latter to impart sourness. In Goa, where the cuisine bears the mark of the state’s Portuguese colonial history, fish dishes are enlivened with fenugreek and the notorious vindaloo curry leavens its red-chilli blast with vinegar, garlic and wine.