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Ajwain or carom originated in India. Both the leaves and the seed-like fruit (often mistakenly called seeds).They have a bitter and pungent taste, with a flavor similar to anise and oregano. They smell almost exactly like thyme because they contain thymol, but they are more aromatic and less subtle in taste, as well as being somewhat bitter and pungent. Even a small number of fruits tends to dominate the flavor of a dish.
The fruits are rarely eaten raw; they are commonly dry-roasted or fried in ghee (clarified butter). In Indian cuisine, a mixture of spices fried in oil or butter, which is used to flavor lentil dishes,the fruits are sprinkled over bread and biscuits.