Section: Where does saffron really come from?

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Saffron is the world’s most expensive spice. But the crocus sativus that produces it grows wild in many parts of Europe. So why isn’t there saffron in Sweden, or Spain, or Finland?

The answer is that no one ever planted it there. The crocus sativus doesn’t grow in cold climates, and Europe has been getting colder over the last ten thousand years.

Saffron is a spice, the flavour of which comes from a dried flower. It was first used in India and China, but now it’s mostly grown in Spain. It takes 70,000 flowers to make one kilogram of saffron. That makes saffron more expensive than gold.

Strictly speaking, saffron is the dried stigmas—the female part of the flower—of a particular kind of crocus. (The male part has no flavour and was once used as a dye.) But there are lots of different kinds of crocus, and some of them have stigmas that look just like saffron, taste like saffron, and cost a lot less than real saffron. So what’s going on?

Saffron is a spice derived from the flower of Crocus sativus. The flower grows in many places around the world, but its most important saffron-producing areas are Spain, Iran and Kashmir.

In Kashmir it grows at high altitude in cold and dry conditions, which is why saffron is known in Kashmir as “the Winter Cherry.”

Saffron is one of the most expensive spices in the world with the Iranian variety being the most expensive. It takes 75,000 flowers to yield just one pound of saffron threads.

Like all spices, saffron has been used for thousands of years for both culinary and medicinal purposes.

Saffron threads are often used to color and flavor foods such as rice dishes; soups; stews; fish and seafood dishes; baked goods such as breads, cakes and cookies; desserts such as puddings or custards; and liquors such as vermouth. Saffron has also been used in traditional medicine to treat depression, anxiety and other mood disorders.”

Saffron is the world’s most expensive spice, so it’s tempting to assume that it must be harvested by hand and prepared by experts. But if you look at the fine print on a package of saffron threads, you’ll see that all it takes to make saffron is crocus flowers and–at least in Morocco–a goat.

Saffron is a spice derived from a flower which is indigenous to the Mediterranean but has been traded since at least the time of the ancient Greeks and Romans, who extracted saffron threads from the flowers and used them for their bright yellow-orange color, for medicinal purposes, and to perfume bathwater. The word “saffron” comes from the Arabic za’faran.

Saffron is used in many cuisines to flavor dishes such as risotto, paella, bouillabaisse and other fish or seafood dishes, soups, rice pudding, baked goods such as cakes, pastries and breads; it is also sometimes used in making liqueurs and in some mixed drinks. It has medicinal uses — including treatment of hay fever — due to its high vitamin A content. It may be used to treat depression or anxiety. Some people use it as an aphrodisiac.

Ever since Crocus sativus was first cultivated in Greece 2,500 years ago, saffron cultivation has been tightly controlled by growers through limited growing areas and high barriers to entry—to protect against fraud.

The quality of saffron depends on many factors: how good the plants are that the saffron is made from

Saffron comes from the saffron crocus (Crocus sativus). You can grow your own. It’s a perennial, so you only have to plant it once. The flowers are gorgeous and fragrant, so it makes an excellent ornamental in your garden. And you won’t have to worry about those pesky birds; they don’t like saffron any more than we do.

Saffron is among the world’s most expensive spices, with a pound of saffron running about $14,000 retail according to Forbes magazine. That’s because it takes tens of thousands of crocuses to produce a pound of saffron; 100,000 flowers may go into making one pound of saffron. But if you’re growing your own, you can get the same quality of saffron that they use in Spain for less than $1 per pound.

Saffron comes from the saffron crocus (Crocus sativus), a pretty little purple flower that blooms in the fall. Each flower has three stigmas, which is what you use to make saffron. Saffron is a very expensive spice, but it’s not an especially rare one. It takes a large number of flowers to make even a single pound of saffron, though: 50,000, give or take. So if you want real saffron in your paella, you’re going to have to pay for it.

Saffron is also really delicate — heat and moisture can destroy it. And it doesn’t have much aroma until you add heat and oxygen to unlock the fragrance molecules. But that’s actually a good thing if you’re trying to cook with it. If the whole point of cooking with saffron is bringing out the flavor, and that flavor needs heat and air to survive, then why put it in at all? Why not just sprinkle some on after the cooking is done? Because if you do that, there’s not enough left over to dry into a powder — and turning saffron into powder is by far the best way to store it.

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