Organic Saffron History:
Saffron, or Crocus sativus, is a highly esteemed spice and has long been the most expensive spice in the world. The reason for such expense is because saffron comes from the stigmas of the crocus flower and is harvested by hand on the morning that the flower blooms. It is thought to have originated in Greece but grows throughout the world. Today, the majority of saffron is sold from Iran.
Organic Saffron Uses:
Throughout history, saffron was valued for different purposes. Some used it for luxurious perfumes while others wore sachets of saffron to avoid the smells of others in public places. They would use it to deodorize public spaces and streets. Saffron was widely used as a dye, either combined with other colors or simply alone. It was thought that Cleopatra used saffron in her baths because she felt its coloring added to her beauty. The wealthy incorporated saffron into their daily bath routines due to its scent purifying qualities. Saffron threads have been found woven into royal carpets and funeral shrouds.
Saffron was very popular for its medicinal uses. Ancient Babylonians used it to aid in gastrointestinal upset as well as improve kidney function. Egyptians agreed that saffron was useful to treat gastrointestinal issues as well as urinary conditions. The Persians used saffron to treat bouts of sadness. It was highly sought after during the plague as medical management for the disease, yet it did not appear to yield positive results.
Organic Saffron Benefits:
Despite its reputation for medicinal properties, saffron is best known for its use in food preparation. Saffron offers a sweet, aromatic flavor with a mild bitterness or metallic taste. A small amount goes a long way. Saffron pairs wonderfully with liquids as they seem to re-hydrate the spice. Its flavor then penetrates through the liquid and thus the food. It can be steeped in water and then added to cooking, or added directly to the dish itself. Saffron pairs well with poultry, seafood, lamb, creamy soups or sauces, rice, and citrus fruits.