This article provides an overview of carom seeds, what they taste like, their availability, alternative names, and of course what other ingredients make carom seeds substitutes.
What are Carom Seeds?
Carom seeds are the fruit of an annual herb in the Apiaceae family. The edible fruit is often mistakenly called a seed; this is due to the resemblance they have to other seeds produced by plants in the same family, such as caraway, cumin, and fennel.
The fruits are often dry-roasted or fried in ghee and widely used in Indian cuisine.
What do Carom Seeds taste like?
Carom seeds often have a pungent and rather bitter taste that can dominate a dish. They have similarities to anise or oregano in flavor and smell almost exactly like thyme, this is because of the active ingredient thymol they both share.
Are Carom Seeds readily available in Supermarkets?
Although not as popular as other ‘seeds’, carom seeds should be available In major supermarkets, usually located in the herbs and spices aisle. Do note, they may be sold under a different name, such as ‘ajwain’.
What are some alternative names for Carom Seeds?
Carom seeds may be referred to as ajowan, ajwain, ajowan caraway, thymol seeds, or bishop’s weed, they are all the same thing.
What is a good substitute for Carom Seeds in recipes?
Luckily, there are a number of great substitutes for carom seeds. These include:
- Caraway Seeds
- Fennel Seeds
- Mexican Oregano