A masala dabba is a traditional Indian spice box and is found in most Indian kitchens. This is used to store dry spices and is always kept near the cooking range for easy and quick access. It is also known as Anjaara Petti or masala dani.
Its design varies from being totally utilitarian to more decorative ones with clear glass lids. The outer dabba/ box may be made of stainless or food grade plastic. The masala dabba consists of a large outer container that holds seven small cylindrical bowls arranged in a tight fit. There is an outer lid that fits atop the large outer container and an inner lid that fits snugly on top of the smaller bowls. The inner lid that is kept on top of the small bowls of spices is nearly airtight and helps to keep them fresh and also to ensure that the spices do not mix. The set may also include 1 to 7 small spoons which fit neatly into the dabba.
The spices contained within the masala dabba are a matter of personal taste. Some of the most commonly used spices are red chilli powder, salt, garam masala, fenugreek, amchur (dried mango powder), mustard seeds, cumin, Bengal gram, turmeric etc.