This is a root that belongs to the ginger family and in some oriental shops can be bought fresh, but the powdered version has been dried and pounded.
It has a very fragrant aroma and a brilliant yellow-ochre colour, which is what makes Indian pilau rice that lovely pale yellow. It is also a major ingredient in our own beloved piccalilli. I always use a little in every curry mixture, as much for its fragrance as for its colour.
Because it comes ready-ground, it doesn't have a long shelf life, so keep an eye on the date stamp.
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