What is saffron?
Saffron, the yellow-orange stigmas from a small purple saffron crocus (Crocus sativus), it belongs to the member of Irish family. Saffron is an inhabitant of the Mediterranean and is now imported primarily from Spain. Saffron is also cultivated in India, China, Turkey, and Iran. Saffron gives a brilliant yellowish tint and a fragrant flavor. The coloring properties and unique flavor of saffron make it useful in some dishes.
How to grow?
It needs patience than the knowledge and it gives better results in full natural light. Generally growing is mostly done in May where corms are filed around 7–15 cm deep; its root base, arises, and simply leaves gets produce between July and March. Good crop production demands cool dry climate with well-drained rich fertile soil and irrigation facilities or sufficient amount of rain fall. The flowers are generally harvested during the early morning hours and soon the stigma separated, allowed to dry and packed for marketing. The current thumb rule is that the deeper the saffron corm is planted the better the quality of spice is produced.
Why saffron is so expensive?
Saffron is regarded as costly as gold because It has been calculated that just about one acre of pink crocuses, the plant from which saffron threads are gathered, each plant produce only3 threads which symbolizes that 190 flowers to generate one g of saffron or about 5400 flowers to generate one ounces of saffron and that would offer you an brief concept that it needs intensive hard work by labors in harvesting saffron thread.
Health benefits of Saffron?
Despite its cost, many herbal healthcare specialists and natural wellness consider saffron has a very huge role to play in terms of health benefit.
- It helps to lower the levels of bad cholesterol and triglycerides.
- Saffron can be applied topically as a paste to relieve dryness and other skin conditions.
- Saffron has also been used in combination with other herbs as a remedy for insomnia, coughing, flatulence, indigestion and baldness.
- In ancient cultures, saffron was used to relieve stomach aches and kidney stones and was also used as an agent in improving the circulation of blood.
How to buy?
Saffron being the most expensive product need to be very much cautious during the time of purchase, there are many adulterated and bogus items being colored to mimic saffron. To determine whether they are genuine or not you need to submerge a bit of saffron into the warm water or milk if color of the liquid changes immediately then it’s a fake product because original saffron at least requires 10 -15 minutes to develop the actual deep red-gold color and the saffron fragrance.
To make a powerful purchasing of saffron go to the genuine good quality grocer. Or else you can go online store. There are many popular sites which offer good quality of saffron. Some of them listed below:
Substitute for saffron
Saffron’s taste, powerful yellow-colored coloring and comparative lack make and if we talk about replacements have been awaited. Although no alternative prevails for saffron’s somewhat nasty and high sodium taste, other spices can be used to fill meals with the same wonderful coloring.
Turmeric: Turmeric root extract has a identical, yellow-colored coloring to saffron. Since its taste is absolutely as opposed to saffron, use turmeric infrequently to provide meals a yellow-colored hue.
Safflower: The safflower place, a close comparative of the sunflower, is generally produced for its seed products which generate oil. The earth safflower flowers make yellow-colored colors used in baking. Safflower has a very plain, almost boring taste, and only a little bit is necessary to generate a yellow-colored coloring.
Edible Flowers: Calendula and Marigold flowers have the same golden tint as saffron. Excessive use of edible flowers while cooking food can cause stomach ache.
Recipes: While saffron may be the world’s most expensive spice, fortunately a little goes a long way. It’s used sparingly to add golden-yellow color and a slightly floral flavor. Enjoy this special spice in these healthy saffron recipes.
- Garlic and Saffron Soup
- Ginger Saffron Ice Cream
- Payasam (Saffron noodles & raisins – Indian desert)
- Iranian/Persian Recipes
- Linguine with Seafood in Saffron Broth
- Plain Saffron Bread
- Rawa (SEMOLINA) Halva
- Rice Milan Style
- Risotto with Peas and Saffron
- Saffron Crepes
- Saffron Ice Cream
- Saffron Rice and Ham Primavera
- Saffron Rice Pilaf
- Seafood Pilaf
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