Ajwain Seed or Carom seed – 50g


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54 In stock

54 in stock

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Product description

Ajwain seeds are also known as carom seeds or bishop’s weed and they’re a spice that’s been around for a long time. Ajwain seeds were pressed into ajwain oil, and were originally used in the Indian herbal medicine practice, Ayurveda. They were often used as a remedy for a lot of household illnesses, as well as for post-partum nursing mothers. Ajwain, or carom, was then co-opted into everyday cooking in order to enhance the nutritional and digestive benefits of dishes The dried fruit is ridged and a dark green/khaki colour, which looks very similar to cumin (which is why it’s also referred to, sometimes, as Ethiopian cumin). Originally grown in West Asia, cultivation soon spread across the continent, mainly to India, and it’s now cultivated in most of the sub-continent, as well as parts of the Middle-East (Iran) and East Africa.

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Flavour Notes:

Raw ajwain fruits have a very strong thyme-like flavour, since they have a greater concentration of thymol. When dried, the flavour is milder, but still has a hot kick that can leave your tongue numb. Ajwain has been variously described as fruity, “spicy,” hot and with a sweet, pleasant aftertaste. Ajwain, or carom is a common spice in the Indian pantry, and is consumed both raw and cooked. It has a distinctive smoky taste when cooked and is used mainly to flavour vegetarian dishes, particularly dishes from the west coast state of Gujarat. Ajwain is a very powerful spice, and can easily take over a dish with its strong, oily aroma, which is why it needs to be used with caution, added a little at a time, until the flavours are just balanced.

Culinary Notes:

In Indian cooking, ajwain is mainly used to flavour pastries and breads like samosa shells, parathas (flaky flatbreads) and rotis. It’s also used as a seasoning for potato curries and as a tempering for dals and pakoras. The spice is also chewed whole with fennel and small sugar cubes after a heavy meal as a digestive aid and a mouth freshener.

Health Benefits:

Ajwain has been used since ancient times for its health properties, thanks to the high concentration of thymol. In Ayurveda, ajwain seeds are crushed and used as parts of pills as remedies for everything from heartburn and digestive problems to kidney and lung problems. Ground ajwain is mixed into a paste to make poultices for skin issues like acne and for arthritis. The seeds are also steeped in milk or other liquids and used as a breast milk enhancer for nursing mothers. It’s also used as an aphrodisiac.

Ajwain is also used in the herbal cosmetic industry, particularly in toothpaste, acne medications and perfumes. It’s also used as a fungicide.

To learn more about Ajwain Seeds, check out our blog: Ajwain (Carom) Seeds: Uses and Health Benefits


100% Ajwain Seeds

country of origin:


other names or spelling:

Carom seed, bishop’s weed, and ajowan caraway

How to use

  • Bloom in a warm pan before sprinkling over dishes as a finishing aromatic touch
  • Can be used as a substitute for thyme or oregano
  • Toss a teaspoon through cut potatoes with olive oil and salt before roasting for an aromatic twist on a classic
  • When cooking rice, add the seeds to your pan first with a touch of oil to bloom followed by your water or stock then rice and cook per packet instructions
  • To integrate the flavour well throughout your dish, grind them gently into a powder in your mortar and pestle
  • The flavour of Ajwain works beautifully with chicken, fish and vegetables, and alongside turmericpaprikafennelcoriander and cumin

The Spice People FAQs

Ajwain seeds are commonly used as a spice in Indian cuisine, particularly in bread, lentil dishes, and vegetable dishes. They can be added whole or ground to dishes to impart a distinctive flavor and aroma.

While Ajwain Seeds have a unique flavor, they can sometimes be used as a substitute for other spices such as thyme or cumin in recipes. However, the flavour won’t be exactly the same, so it’s best to use them in dishes where their distinctive taste complements the other ingredients.

Ajwain seeds should be stored in an airtight container in a cool, dry place, away from moisture and direct sunlight. Proper storage will help maintain their flavor and aroma for an extended period.

The Spice People FAQs

Simple or smoke paprika along with cayenne pepper is the best alternative. Paprika tastes similar to Kashmiri Chilli, while cayenne paper adds to its spice.

Dried Kashmiri chilli is more flavorful than hot, ranging from 1,000-2,000 Scoville Heat Units. It’s mildly hot but not too spicy.

These spices are different. Paprika is the sweet cousin of Kashmiri chilli specific to western cuisine. Kashmiri chilli popular in Indian cuisine and is hotter than paprika.

Place the Kashmiri chilli under the sun for two days. When the chillies turn crispy, grind them in a food mill. Cool down the powder and store it in an airtight jar.

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Copyright © 2023 The Spice People. All Rights Reserved.

Country Flavours

This subtle and artful balance provides the perfect flavour foundation for creating the best Malaysian food with the addition of salty hits from dried anchovies and shrimp, up to ten different soy sauces ranging from salty to sweet, puckering sourness from tamarind pulp, and sweetness from palm sugar and coconut milk. Cook your own authentic Malaysian Cuisine with our Malaysian spices online and explore our catalogue of beautiful recipes you can make with this spice blend.

History & influences

Arab traders brought spices from the Middle East, European and British travellers introduced produce like peanuts, pineapple, avocado, tomato, squash and pumpkin. During their time on the Malay Peninsula, the Chinese developed a distinctive cuisine known as ‘Nonya’, resulting from blending Chinese recipes and wok cooking techniques with spices and ingredients used by the local Malay community. The dishes are tangy, aromatic, spicy and herbaceous, and the signature dish is none other than Malaysia’s famous spiced noodle soup – Laksa.

What is Malaysian cuisine

As important as the rendang recipe itself is to Malaysian cuisine, what to serve with beef rendang is arguably just as imperative. Whether making the traditional beef version or a slightly lighter chicken, vegetable or fish, the rich flavour and intense texture of a rendang requires a perfect balance of freshness and tang when it comes to entrees and sides. Salads like Fresh Cucumber & Peanut and Sweet and Sour Cucumber & Pineapple Achar provide the perfect disruption to the bold, rich spices of the rendang and soothe and cool the palette alongside fluffy steamed rice and flaky golden roti bread. Entrees served at meal times in Malaysia often feature Nasi Lemak – their national dish, or Malaysian Chicken Satay to whet the appetite ready for the main event. Traditionally, the best Malaysian food is finished with an after-meal drink of Kopi Tarek ‘sweet coffee’ or The Tarik ‘sweet tea’. These are combined with condensed milk and water, and the coffee or tea drinks are ‘pulled’ by pouring vigorously between jugs to create a frothy consistency. To read more about the flavours of Malaysia and the traditional accompaniments to an authentic Malaysian Rendang, Click Here to check out our blog post.


Malaysia is also known for its growing and production of spices, namely cinnamon, cardamom, star anise and cloves. These spices are known as ‘rempah empat beradik’, meaning the four siblings as they are found throughout most Malay dishes. These are sold separately or as a handy blend often under names like ‘seafood curry spices’ or ‘meat curry spices’. Paired with other aromatics like kaffir lime, galangal and lemongrass (locally grown and imported) these four spices produce the complex and fragrant base flavour and aroma famous for Malaysian cooking.  As diverse as the people themselves, every aspect of Malaysian cuisine is a combination of sweet, sour, rich and spicy, combined in a way, unlike any other country’s cuisine.