Posted in May 15, 2012, 6:27pm
In a laboratory class in HRM, all of herbs and spices are studied. And what caught my attention was this very expensive spice used in soups and stews. To learn more, let's talk a little thing about it and what characteristics of saffron made it too expensive, like 1 gram of saffron costs around $4 or $5.
The word saffron comes from the Arabic zafaran, which means it is worth as much as gold. Just think, to plant a field of one hectare requires from eight hundred thousand to a million tubers of crocus sativus. And to get one kilo of powdered saffron takes from one hundred and twenty thousand to one hundred and fifty thousand flowers, and about a hundred hours of hard work.But what is saffron? It is a dust extracted from the stamens of the flower. The stamen is the top part of the pistil and is bright red in color.
In Europe, througout the middle ages and the renaissance, saffron was considered a cure for all ills. Later, it was used to flavor and color medicines, food pastes, cheeses and aperitifs. Saffron is an ingredient in many very famous recipes, like the Italian risotto alla Milanese, the French bouillabaise provencale, and thd Spanish paella from Catalonia. The most highly sought after saffron is grown in Italy, in a town in Tgd Abruzzo region called Navelli. In September, the surrounding plain is covered by a carpet of blue crocuses. The saffron is harvested in October, when it is cloudy, or early in the morning, so that the sun does not cause the stamen to wither.
All images are from Mr. Wiki.