Kebab seasoning, or, to name it correctly, a Turkish-inspired Baharat, is a collection of spices used to give Turkish foods its delicious flavour.
What is Kebab Seasoning or Turkish Baharat
Turkey sits at the crossroads of the Asian spice worlds and the European continent. Its capital, Istanbul, sits on both continents where tourists can stand with one foot in Asia and one foot in Europe. This unique position made Turkey somewhat of a spice hub, linking the two continents along the old spice routes.
In the UK, kebabs have been a staple food and adorned our high streets forever. Their flavour is synonymous with late nights and grease, but a good kebab deserves to be eaten soba. And much of this comes down to the sweeter, milder spices flavouring the meat. The heat in Turkish seasoning typically comes from gentler sources such as black pepper and a dried chilli condiment known as pul biber. Pul biber is a dried and ground Aleppo chilli peppers.
Spices for Kebab Seasoning
Whole vs. Ground Spices
There’s an argument to be made for using whole spices over ground spices. Ground spices tend to lose favour over time. However, most people wouldn’t notice these small changes. This recipe calls for whole spices, but if you prefer a quicker method, feel free to substitute them for the same amount as their ground counterpart.
This recipe doesn’t call for mint. However, if you were to follow different recipes, they may call for dried mint. This is optional and down to preference if you want to use it here. If I were to use this seasoning in a lamb koftas or kebabs recipe, I would generally add fresh mint to the recipe, meaning I’ve rendered dried, substandard mint useless.
Kebab Seasoning (Turkish Baharat)
- 2 Tbsp Cumin Seeds
- 2 Tbsp Coriander Seeds
- 2 Tbsp Black Peppercorns
- 1 Tsp Cloves
- 1 Tsp Ground Cardamon
- 1 Tsp Ground Nutmeg
- 2 Tsp Paprika
- ½ Tsp Ground Cinnamon
- Grind the whole spices and mix with the already ground ingredients.