Revered since time immemorial, saffron blends sensual and enticing color, aroma and flavor to all gastronomic dishes.
It is one of the most traditional and natural spices in history. Saffron can be used in either filament form or powdered in dishes such as paellas, stews, soups, pastas, sauces & yes, even desserts! – the list is endless.
Called “Azafran” by the Spanish, the La Mancha variety of saffron is prized for its mellow, sweet, and floral aroma. The aroma is layered with musky, floral, bitter tones. The flavor is pungent and earthy, with notes of honey. The flavor can be hard to nail down and described.
History of Saffron
The world’s most prized spice is also the world’s most expensive. Saffron is the most expensive spice in the world because each flower, or crocus, produces only three stigmas each. The stigmas are laboriously hand harvested, only three weeks of the year.
Saffron Threads are the dried stigmas of the saffron crocus flower and it takes more than 1,500 stigmas (from more than 4,600 crocus flowers) to make just 1 ounce of Saffron Threads
Although saffron traces its origins to Persia and is now widely produced in countries like China and Iran, the very best saffron is Spanish. This highly aromatic saffron comes from the fields of Castilla y la Mancha in central Spain. Spanish Saffron is set apart by its bright red color and explosive aroma. But don’t worry; a little bit goes a long way.
Saffron is perfect when used in cooking seafood dishes such as bouillabaisse, paella, risotto, and biryanis . Try adding some to your next beef stew, soup or tomato-based sauce for and added depth of flavor.
If you’re going for authenticity in dishes, you’ve got to have saffron. There’s really no substitute for its flavor.
Saffron is not just for savory dishes anymore. Saffron pairs very well with apples, honey, cinnamon, and cream. Use it for cookies, puddings, cakes, and even ice cream!
Health Benefits of Saffron
Culinarians and Foodies alike know that saffron can perk up a paella or scintillate a soup, but that’s not the only reason to enjoy it. Saffron is said to aid with digestion, strengthen the heart, fight contagious diseases, relieve coughs, clear liver obstructions, soothe babies’ teething problems, ease intestinal problems and even lower cholesterol.
How do we use Saffron?
To enjoy the pure flavor of saffron, mix a few strands with hot water for a delicious and soothing saffron infusion, and stir the liquid into your recipe no more than 15 minutes before the dish in finished cooking.
What foods do we use Saffron in?
Our favorite is in rice when making a paella, but we also love to use saffron in chicken soup.
Is Saffron expensive?
On the surface, saffron seems very expensive. As far as spices go, it is the most expensive in the world. However, La Mancha saffron is so powerful, you only need a few strands per recipe. So it goes a long way.
Where can you buy Pure La Mancha Saffron?
Well that’s easy! Nomad Spice Co. We import our Saffron directly from Spain – no middle-man. Since we are the importer, our saffron is always in stock!