Asafoetida, a strong-smelling spice, is quite a familiar ingredient in cooking though it is not a quintessential aromatic spice that you would normally associate too many dishes with.
At the same time, it is a crucial ingredient in dishes like sambar and rasam. As it is not used very extensively, finding enough of it to cook may pose a challenge, at times. You may often find it runs out of stock only while you are cooking.
In times like those, you may opt for some substitutes that have a prominent flavour so that they can make up for the absence of this extra flavourful spice.
Cumin seeds and coriander
A combination of cumin and coriander seeds powder will help lend a special flavour to the dish. Although the same level of flavour as provided by asafoetida is difficult to achieve, adding the spice mix will help cover the absence of asafoetida to a great extent.
One of the most commonly available substitutes for asafoetida is garlic powder. Adding the spice helps alter the taste and aroma of dishes.
It does not possess the sharper flavour of asafoetida, but it releases a mild flavour and provides almost a similar taste. It can be used to make different forms of salads, sauces, and soups.
Like garlic powder, this too is made of dried onion. It helps negate the absence of asafetida to a great extent.
They possess a special taste and aroma that can complement the dish. Though it does not bear any similarity to asafoetida and can never match in intensity, adding a bit of dried fennel seeds powder will work as a suitable substitute. You may forget about the absence of asafoetida in the dish, the least.