Nigella is native to Western Asia. The seeds have a subtle herbaceous, peppery and earthy nut like taste flavour. Nigella seeds are often incorrectly referred to as black onion seeds (but are from different plants). Nigella is most often used on Turkish Bread and flat breads throughout the Middle East and goes well with cauliflower and potatoes. Nigella is one of the five spices in Panch Phora which is used extensively in Indian cooking to enhance Dahl’s, and add flavour and texture to curries and vegetable dishes. Due to their mild flavour nigella seeds can be used for visual appeal in cous cous, rice dishes or potato salads.
Uses and Ideas! ©
- Crush 1 tbsp nigella seeds with 1 tsp each coriander seeds and cumin seeds in a pestle and mortar and use for sautéed potatoes, zucchini, fennel, okra, spinach, onions, leeks, cauliflower, beans, and tomatoes.
- Make a pilaf using basmati rice with the addition of grated carrot and nigella seeds or add nigella to chickpeas braised with tomatoes.
- Toss crushed nigella seeds through a dice of roast root vegetables with a pinch of ground ginger, turmeric and allspice.