Sunday, December 9, 2012

Dermie's Weekly Best Buy: Green Saffron Spices...

Green Saffron is an environmentally friendly Indian family business founded by Arun Kapil. Arun came up with an idea to bring small, frequent shipments of the freshest, highest quality spices direct from India to their base in Midleton, East Cork and sell at the local Farmers' markets and food stores.

Green Saffron specialises in the highest grade, farm-fresh whole spices and proprietary blends of exceptional quality brought direct to you for use in your home cooking. Arun's extended family in India travel the length of India on their mission to source the very finest spices available, all with 100% provenance.

Arun oversees all of the grinding and blending of the spices to ensure his loyal customers receive the very freshest spices, the most beautiful proprietary blends and traditional “curry powders” of the utmost, authentic nature. It is not unusual for their spices to be ground and blended on the same day as they are shipped.

Using Green Saffron spice blends really could not be simpler as Arun includes simple step-by-step recipes on the back of every pack guiding you through how to prepare the dish. The main blends can be found in attractive brown paper sachets in the following range:

Rogan Josh is a medium Rattan Jyoth bark and Kashmiri chillies for a distinctive red colour combine with beautifully pungent asafoetida and sweetly fragrant green cardamoms to create his intensely honest offering from Northern India.

Masala Gosht is a hot aromatic mace, intoxicating nutmegs and sun dried curry leaves which combine in this sweetly fragrant dish of Andhra Pradesh, a region of Southern India renowned for a little extra kick in its cuisine.

Dahl Makhani is a medium creamy Punjabi classic combining beautifully aromatic Garam Masala with pungent asafoetida, an earthy tang of cumin and a tantalising touch of fresh chilli for this warming wholesome dish.

Garam Masala is a beautiful mild seasoning sprinkled on a curry or in a riata and a gently exotic lift when added to any sauce, marinade or soup. It includes black pepper, white cumin, coriander, fennel, cinnamon, star anise, green cardamon, cloves, mace, nutmeg, black cardamon, rose petals.

Green Saffron's Seasonal Range...  

Green Saffron stock a number of delicious seasonal ranges from Mulled Wine, to Turkey Seasoning, to even Christmas Puddings. Keep an eye out for their range at Mahon Point Farmers' Market every Thursday, at the Midleton Farmers' Market and The Milk Market, Limerick every Saturday. 

Green Saffron are increasing their retail presence and can now be found in all good artisan food stores including Donnybrook Fair, Fallon & Byrne and in selected SuperValu outlets. A full list of stockists can be found here.

Recipe: Arun's Chana Masala One Pot Wonder Curry

(Serves 4-6)


- 1 Tbp ghee, butter, clarified butter (or a couple of splashes of oil)
- 450g or 1 big onion, chopped up into a rough dice
- 60g or 2 fat inches of ginger, grated or whizzed
- 4 cloves of garlic, finely chopped or whizzed
- 1 pkt of Green Saffron Chana Masala mix
- 1 tin Chopped tomatoes
- 1 tin Chickpeas


1. Put the ghee (butter or oil) into a heavy bottomed saucepan or casserole dish and heat on a medium flame.

2. Add the onion, ginger, garlic and sweat gently on a low heat until the onions have softened and the garlic gives off its gorgeous fragrance. Try not to colour the garlic, as this will give it and the end dish a bitter flavour.

3. Add the packet of Green Saffron Chana Masala mix and stir for a couple of minutes to combine all the flavours. It may look a bit dry at this stage, but don’t worry it’s all good!

4. Open the tins, drain the chick peas in a sieve. Discard the salty water from the chick peas – you’re not going to need it. Pour the chick peas and chopped tomatoes into the pan, turn up the heat and gently stir.

5. Heat the mixture until it just starts to bubble, then turn the heat down and simmer for a few minutes, 5 or 10 minutes will do.

6. Then, turn the heat off, sprinkle with Green Saffron Garam Masala and serve immediately... simple!

Serving suggestion:

Serve with loads of steaming, fluffy Indian Basmati Rice as part of an Indian meal or serve by itself with a couple of chapattis and riata...


This recipe has been tried and tested by the Green Saffron Masaalchi and is pretty much guaranteed, but if you want to change the quantities of a couple of ingredients go for it, experiment and enjoy your cooking. With Green Saffron spices you can’t go wrong!