Makes: ¾ cup (180 mL)
Preparation time: about an hour
1 heaping teaspoon (5 to 7 mL) whole cloves
1½ tsp (7.5 mL) black cardamom seeds (about 10 whole cardamom pods)
6 heaping tablespoons (90 to 100 mL) cumin seeds
1 tbsp (15 mL) pounded cinnamon sticks
¼ tsp (1 mL) ground mace
¼ tsp (1 mL) ground nutmeg
Turn on your stove exhaust fan. In a heavy-bottomed frying pan, heat cloves, black cardamom seeds, cumin seeds and cinnamon sticks on medium to high heat, stirring constantly. When the cumin seeds become a darker shade of brown, remove from the stove. Transfer the roasted spices to a bowl and cool for 20 minutes.
Place roasted spices, mace and nutmeg in a spice (or coffee) grinder and grind until the mixture has the consistency of store-bought ground black pepper. Can be used right away. Will also keep in an airtight container in a dark cupboard or drawer for up to 6 months.