This wild cumin is hand-picked by foragers in the Hindu Kush mountains of Afghanistan. They are tiny, oblong and black with long stems. Botanically distinct from common cumin (Cuminum cyminum), the wild mountain cumin is renowned in Afghanistan and throughout central and south Asia for its delicious flavor as well as its medicinal properties. It has a savory, penetrating aroma and bright, umami flavor evocative of grilled meats and sweet caramelized onions.
ORIGIN: Badakhshan, Afghanistan Process: Sun-dried Tasting notes: Grilled Onion • Dried Apricots • Mountain Air
Toast whole seeds in oil to start stir-fries, soups, or curries Add to your rub for meats or vegetables before roasting or grilling Create a DIY curry powder or garam masala In Spinach with Cumin and Garlic (community recipe) In Chicken Korma (community recipe) In Mahi Mahi with Stewed Spiced Peaches (community recipe) Pairs well with: Black Urfa Chili, Cinnamon Verum (Ground), Mediterranean Coriander
SOURCING: Wild mountain cumin is sourced directly from networks of foragers in the Hindu Kush mountain range of Badakhshan province in the northeastern corner of Afghanistan. The Hindu Kush range is characterized by steep, rocky peaks cut through by green river valleys; the significant snowfall in the winter results in abundant vegetation in the short spring and summer seasons despite low rainfall. The rocky soil cultivates an ancient and resilient varietal of cumin with a warm pungent flavor and irresistible aroma.
The cumin grows wild and other than the small quantities B&B exclusively exports, is harvested only for local consumption; there is no scalability or institutional infrastructure for export, and they are only able to source this very rare cumin varietal because of Burlap & Barrel founder Ethan’s years working in Badakhshan and surrounding provinces.
Burlap & Barrel is the only importer of wild mountain cumin from Afghanistan. This cumin grows wild and can be considered naturally organic as no pesticides or other chemicals are used in its cultivation.
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