You may not have heard of the baharat spice mixture, but it is very popular in Middle Eastern cuisine. All the more reason to put baharat in the spotlight. Because what is baharat actually? And what can you do with it in the kitchen?
What is Baharat?
You may be familiar with the mixture of spices, but what exactly is baharat? Baharat is Arabic for ‘spices’. It is therefore a mix of different spices, which is widely used in Middle Eastern cuisines. The name for this mixture comes from the Indian emperor Bharata, because India and the Middle East used to trade a lot in spices. Although there are many regional differences in the composition of the mix, there are a number of spices that are common in baharat, such as black pepper, cardamom, coriander, nutmeg, cumin, turmeric, ginger and also paprika powder.
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What can you do with it?
Baharat is often used to flavor lamb, sheep, beef or chicken. It is also often used with fish, in soups and for sauces. So use the spice mixture for rubbing meat, in a stew or as a marinade for fish. In many recipes that use ground cumin, you can replace this spice with baharat, which gives you a slightly different, spicy taste. Also try making hamburgers with baharat (1 full teaspoon of baharat per 500 g of minced meat), to lick your fingers, so delicious.
Where do you buy baharat?
It is often available in larger supermarkets, but unfortunately not available everywhere. But don’t worry: the spice mixture is often on the shelves at the toko or the Turkish shop. If you really can’t find it, you can also make the mixture yourself. As mentioned before, the composition differs per region, but here we give you a basic recipe – add more or less of a certain spice to taste:
- 2 tsp cinnamon
- 2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
- 2 tsp ground cumin
- 2 tsp ground cardamom
- 2 tsp ground coriander
- 1 tsp nutmeg
- 1 tsp cloves
How do you replace it?
Because baharat consists of so many different spices, it is not easy to replace it with just one spice – you will always get a less complex taste. You can choose a mix of, for example, ground cumin, ground coriander and also smoked paprika powder, or try garam masala.
How should you store it?
Like other spices, baharat lasts longest in an airtight container in a dry, dark place at room temperature. Depending on whether the spice mixture is freshly made or bought, it can be kept for several months to several years. If you’re not sure if it’s still good, you can smell and taste; if the mixture still smells strong and doesn’t taste musty, you can still use it.
Recipes with baharat:
Got hungry? We totally get that. It is now clear to us how versatile baharat is. Try it out in one of the following recipes!
Chocolate cream with tahini
Yes, baharat can also be a delicious addition to sweet dishes. The spice mixture nicely balances the sweetness of the chocolate and honey.
> to the recipe: chocolate cream with tahini
Stuffed eggplant with jackfruit and yogurt sauce
The spicy, spicy baharat is perfect in combination with, for example, the fresh creamy yogurt in this recipe. Our bellies are already rumbling, are you?
> to the recipe: stuffed aubergines with jackfruit and yoghurt sauce
Lamb shoulder with garlic and butter
In this recipe you can replace the freshly ground cumin seeds with baharat. The spice mix is a perfect combination with the deliciously tender lamb and the tasty rice.
> to the recipe: shoulder of lamb with garlic and butter
Homemade falafel burgers
Replace the spices in this recipe with baharat – more complex, deeper flavors guaranteed!
> to the recipe: homemade falafel burgers