Makes 1 cup

1/2 cup coriander seeds
15 dry red chili pods (optional, see Note)
1 1/2 teaspoons cumin seeds
1 1/2 teaspoons mustard seeds
1 1/2 teaspoons fenugreek seeds
1 1/2 teaspoons black peppercorns
15-20 curry leaves (dry or fresh, optional)
3 tablespoons turmeric powder

1. Mix coriander, chili pods, cumin, mustard seeds, fenugreek seeds, and peppercorns in the container of an electric blender or spice mill and grind the spices to a fine powder in several batches. Pour into a bowl and combine well.
2. If you are using fresh curry leaves, dry them briefly (about 4 to 5 minutes) in an ungreased frying pan over low heat. Grind them in the blender and then add them to the spice powder in the bowl.
3. Stir in the turmeric.
4. Transfer the curry powder to an airtight jar, cover tightly, and store in a cool place for up to three months.
NOTE: For mild-tasting curry powder, reduce or eliminate chili pods.