Melt the butter in a medium saucepan over low heat, stirring frequently. As foam rises to the top, skim and discard it. Continue cooking, without letting butter brown, until no more foam appears. Add the onion, garlic, ginger, fenugreek, cumin, cardamom, oregano, turmeric, and basil and continue cooking for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Remove from the heat and let stand until the spices settle. Strain through a fine-mesh sieve before using.
Store in the refrigerator in a tightly covered container for up to 3 weeks.
Recipe courtesy Marcus Samuelsson
Makes 1 cup
1 teaspoon fenugreek seeds
½ cup ground dried Serrano chilies or other ground dried chilies
½ cup paprika
2 tablespoons salt
2 teaspoons ground ginger
2 teaspoons onion powder
1 teaspoon ground cardamom, preferably freshly ground
1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
½ teaspoon garlic powder
¼ teaspoon ground cloves
¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
¼ teaspoon ground allspice
Finely grind the fenugreek seeds with a mortar and pestle or in an electric spice or coffee grinder. Stir together with the remaining ingredients in a small bowl until well combined.
Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 months.