Rogan Josh Seasoning: The Kashmiri Equivalent To Curry Powder

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The name rogan josh is believed to have come from two Persian words, the Persian word for clarified butter and the Persian word for heat or boiling. The theory is that the full name of the dish means to boil in ghee. Other sources suggest the word rogan has the same root as the word for red and simply describes the color of the dish.

Rogan josh is a curry from Kashmir but is thought to have originated in Iran (formerly Persia). Rogan Josh seasoning is the blend of spices used to flavor this dish.

This spice blend was brought to Kashmir by Muslim Mughals who spent summers in Kashmir to get away from the heat of their homes in India’s plains. Their cuisine was influenced by Persian food. In Kashmiri cuisine, rogan josh forms a part of the Wazwan. The Wazwan is a meal consisting of 36 different courses. The dishes that make up those courses can vary considerably. Rogan josh is one of the few permanent fixtures.

Rogan josh flavor profile

The spices most commonly used to make this seasoning include:

Traditional rogan josh has a bright red color that comes from the red chilies. The seeds are removed so it winds up being milder than it might appear to be at first. The other spices make rogan josh sweet and highly aromatic so that it perfectly complements a variety of meats. As with many Indian dishes that have been around for awhile, there are numerous rogan josh variations. Some versions made in the west use tomatoes to achieve the red color. They also dilute any chili peppers to reduce the heat level. Yogurt is also added to make the dish one of the mildest curry blends.

Health benefits of rogan josh seasoning

As with other Indian seasoning blends, most of the components in rogan josh seasoning are very nutritious, resulting in a spice blend that has numerous health-enhancing qualities. Nutrients in rogan josh seasoning include:

  • Vitamins: Paprika and cayenne are both good sources of vitamin A, while cloves contain high levels of vitamin K.
  • Minerals: Mace is a good source of iron, as is paprika. Cloves are an extremely rich source of manganese. Rogan josh seasoning also contains several other minerals including magnesium, calcium, and potassium.
  • Dietary fiber: All of the rogan josh seasoning ingredients are excellent fiber sources.

The nutrients in rogan josh seasoning may make it useful for the treatment or prevention of health conditions like:

  • Diabetes: Cinnamon is thought to help reduce glucose levels in people with type 2 diabetes.
  • Poor digestion: Cloves help to stimulate the secretion of digestive enzymes that reduce flatulence and relieve other digestive problems.
  • Eye problems: Vitamin A is important for preventing vision problems like night blindness and macular degeneration. Rogan josh seasoning can provide this nutrient as a result of the fact that blends often contain paprika, cayenne pepper, or a combination of the two.

Common uses of rogan josh seasoning

It’s used mainly in the preparation of, you guessed it, rogan josh. It is a blend formulated to make cooking the dish simpler; however, Indian cooks typically put their own blend together. Rogan josh is traditionally made with lamb, but beef can be used instead. Typically, the dish is served alongside basmati rice or with soft naan.