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Wild Mountain Cumin

Savory, penetrating aroma and bright umami flavor.

Regular price
$9.99
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$9.99
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Our Wild Mountain Cumin has a savory, penetrating aroma and bright, umami flavor evocative of grilled meats and sweet caramelized onions.

The tiny, oblong black seeds are hand-picked by foragers in the Hindu Kush mountains of Afghanistan. Botanically distinct from common cumin, our Wild Mountain Cumin is renowned in Afghanistan and throughout central and south Asia for its delicious flavor as well as its medicinal properties.

The seeds are smaller and softer than the cumin you may be used to, and they do not need to be ground before use.

Highlights

Origin:

Badakhshan, Afghanistan

Aliases:

Black cumin, Persian cumin, kala jeera, Elwendia persica

Process:

Sun-dried

Ingredients:

Whole wild cumin (Bunium persicum)

Tasting notes:

Grilled Onion • Dried Apricots • Mountain Air

Cooking tips

  • Bloom seeds in hot oil or ghee and use as the base for stews, curries or braises
  • Grind seeds and mix with other spices like coriander and black pepper for a savory protein rub 
  • Mix whole seeds into guacamole, vinaigrettes or yogurt-based spreads
"This made me question every taste of cumin I'd had before."
β€œThis is like a supercharged version of what you know and love from Sichuan food or tacos. It’s incredibly versatile.” -Rikki Giambruno, Chef & Owner
β€œWild Mountain Cumin has kicked my grilling game up to a new level of deliciousness with its bright, umami flavor.”

SOURCING

Sourcing image

Our 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 we export, is harvested only for local consumption; there is no scalability or institutional infrastructure for export, and we 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. Our cumin grows wild and can be considered naturally organic, as no pesticides or other chemicals are used in its cultivation.

Meet the Forager: Ali collects our Wild Mountain Cumin from foragers who bring it down from the high mountains of Afghanistan's Hindu Kush to Faizabad, where he cleans it and prepares it for shipment.

how do we compare? Supermarket Icon Supermarket Fair Trade Icon Fair Trade
Heirloom Spices Yes No No
Fair Prices for Farmers Yes No Depends on global commodity price
Time in Storage None. We import spices at harvest Up to 10 years At least 1 year
Flavor Profile Intense & fresh Stale & bland Inconsistent
Knows Farmers Names Yes No Unlikely
Customer Service Fast responses from real people! No There might be a 1-800 number?
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