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Can we ground kalpasi (also known as Black stone flower) be added to a masala for marinating chicken/mutton for making Hyderabadi Biriyani?

Will it taste really good; does this spice add good flavoring and aroma to the Dum Biriyani?

Are the results better if you first cook the kalpasi in oil before adding it to the marinating mixture?

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2 Answers 2

Kalpasi is type of lichen, usually used in spices for typical Chettinad and West Indian (Maharashtrian) Cuisines.

Dry ground kalpasi has little or no smell and should be roasted in little oil to get its actual and full aroma.

It has a distinct smell, which it would impart, if used properly i.e. after roasting (also depends on how and for how much time you marinate).

Its generally used in combination with other spices like cardamom, cloves, bay leaves, cinnamon, nutmeg, star anise, saffron, peppers etc. for flavor.

On its own, it can't add much flavor.

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Kalpaasi (‘Kal’ as in culture, ‘paa’ as in pa and ‘si’ as in see) – a peculiar spice with a peculiar shape, can be found along with other spices if you get a whole curry masal packet from any grocery stores in South-India. However it’s not a peculiar spice for the Tamilnadu folks, especially for the Chettinadu locals. You can get Kalpasi separately too. In the US, in the India grocers near my home, I found it with the name dagad phool. In Tamil, ‘Kal’ means stone and ‘paasi’ means light green moss that grows on rocks in running streams or rivers or on trees in hill stations.

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