Cumin seeds are the dried seeds of the herb plant known as Cuminum Cyminum. Cumin seeds are light brown in colour and have relatively a rougher surface. The colour is more even without the darker stripes. They are know as jeera powder in India.
Cumin seeds are increasingly popular in Latin American, African and Middle Eastern cuisines. Cumin seeds are roasted and ground into cumin powder.
It is impossible to think about Indian cuisine without jeera powder or seeds. Most recipes with cumin powder are prominent. It is one of the most essential Indian spices which form the basis of many Indian curries, dishes and spice blends including the versatile Garam Masala.
Crushed cumin seeds are also added to bread, cheese, biscuits and to also to baked goods for cumin flavoured taste. Cumin seeds fall under the sweet category of spices and are mellow to taste when cooked or eaten raw.
As the flavour of cumin powder or seeds is not overriding, it makes a great base spice for many spice mixes, sauces and curries.