Originally Posted by Ekim
Well I though he used star anise. Those are pretty big, at least the one I broke apart in Penzey's this afternoon was!
Thanks for the input.
A lot of Indian cookery uses whole spices. Just to take a simple example, you have the Panch Puran mixture used in the east.
Many spices are edible whole; cardamom seeds (with the husks removed), cumin seeds, coriander seeds, mustard seeds, fennel seeds, kalonji seeds.
If the spices are inedible ( star anise, whole black cardamom, cassia bark, etc ) you just push them to the side of the plate.
Whole seeds give a wonderful texture to food. If you want another example, stirfry some potato (or sweet potato) with mustard powder.
Do another lot in whole black (or brown) mustard seeds.
NOT the same difference, eh?
One of my favourite dishes is stir-fried(thick-sliced) courgettes with whole cumin seeds. Just the veg, the cumin, salt, ghee and a finely chopped green chilli or two.