Panch Phoran: The 5-Spice Mix from the Eastern Indian Kitchen

An eastern Indian kitchen is rarely complete without this spice mix on the shelf; not that we add it in everything, but most dishes would be considered incomplete without it. A five-spice mix, it’s called the panch phoron in Bengali and Oriya, and is quite commonly used in Bangladeshi, Bhojpuri and Maithili, Bengali, Oriya, and Assamese food. Comprising entirely of seeds, this spice mix has fenugreek (methi), nigella (kalonji), cumin (jeera), black mustard (rai), and fennel (saunf)