I am by no means a chef, I just cook dinner at home most nights.

I like the flavor of cumin and use it in some of the food that I make. Perhaps in a mushroom sauce, melted into the cheese for nachos, in fried cubed potatoes, etc.

However, I notice that when I use cumin, it is inevitable that I will end up eating 2 of the small pieces at once at some point in the dish and it overpowers the bite.

What am I doing wrong with the cumin? Should I be grinding it?

2 Answers 2


Cumin is most often used ground, yes.

You can, if you prefer—and as in common in Indian and other cuisines—toast it first until it is fragrant (a minute or two in a dry skillet at medium heat).

Then, grind it in a spice grinder or mortar and pestle.

  • Cumin is most often used ground, yes. In which country? May 23, 2013 at 11:53
  • I think everywhere, Anisha. Do you know somewhere it is commonly eaten without being ground first? Even in Indian cuisine, I see it being toasted, but then ground.
    – SAJ14SAJ
    May 23, 2013 at 11:56

You are perhaps using too much of Cumin.

We use Cumin seeds daily in each and every north Indian food of ours.
In vegetables for 2 adults we put a 1/4 table spoon Cumin seeds in a little hot oil and fry them until they get golden browned. Then all the onions and tomatoes and other stuff goes in.

Of course taste is subjective and your millage may vary.

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