Ajowan seeds (also known as carom seeds) are native to southern India and are used commonly throughout southern Asia and the Middle East.
Ajowan smells and tastes a lot like very strong thyme, though slightly more peppery and with a lightly bitter aftertaste. Dry roasting ajowan or frying it in oil mellows the flavour and brings out a caraway taste. It is used in breads, savoury pastries and bean dishes throughout southern Asia. It’s also excellent with fish (along with lemon and garlic).
A natural antiseptic, ajowan is widely believed to act as a digestive aid.