saffron spice: 5 posts

Cauliflower with Saffron and Coriander

Saffron has the reputation of a luxurious spice. Use it in tiny quantities for the most delicate of preparations like custards and seafood bisques, advises many a cookbook. Certainly, unless you live in saffron producing areas like Iran, Turkey or Kashmir, you’ll pay more for saffron than other spices in your collection, but its flavor is so dramatic that it’s worth a splurge. What I don’t agree with is using saffron only in special occasion dishes. Life is too short for that.

cauliflower-saffron1

Saffron has a medicinal-leathery scent, with a hint of apricot and floral notes. Its fragrance will entice on its own, but it’s bold enough to stand up next to strong flavors. Today’s recipe is a good example. It’s a cold cauliflower dish, and it’s a good vehicle for saffron. The combination of coriander, saffron and white wine is the right blend of spice and acidity, and it gives cauliflower elegance that one doesn’t usually expect from cruciferous vegetables.

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Pilaf with Apricots, Dates and Saffron Shirin Plov Recipe

Shirin plov2s

Describing the taste of shirin plov, an exquisite rice dish originating from Azerbaidjan’s capital Baku, is not unlike talking about a fine perfume. It has a bright top fruity note of apricots and raisins, a warm heart of rosewater and saffron, while the milky-popcorn notes of basmati rice and butter provide a sensual and lingering backdrop. It is a memorable combination that gives one a full taste of Azerbaidjan—the country on the Caspian Sea coast, whose history is a tapestry of influences. Indeed, shirin plov is not simply a delicious dish—its interesting manner of preparation and elaborate flavorings with Persian accents provide a glimpse into the rich mélange that is Azeri culture.

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Saffron Cake Recipe

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Michelle Krell Kydd ended her article Saffron : The Flavor and Fragrance of Joy with the promise of sharing the recipe for saffron cake. Although saffron lends itself to many preparations, both sweet and savory, I find that the nutty warmth of whole wheat and the piney freshness of cardamom are the perfect backdrops for the full range of saffron’s flavor. In Indian and Middle Eastern desserts, saffron is often paired with cardamom, rose and the velvety richness of milk. Whispers of this classical composition can be noticed in this quick-bread. It combines the lightness of the crumb with the delicately chewy texture of the toasted crust. The voluptuous flavor of saffron lingers beautifully, attesting to the perfect name for this cake—Saffron Kiss.…

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Saffron : The Flavor and Fragrance of Joy

Iranian_saffron_1

by Michelle Krell Kydd

Saffron is a spice that needs no introduction. It infuses whatever it touches with a distinct golden hue, adding an aroma that resembles the commingling of hay, honeyed musk, leather and almonds. To taste saffron is to know how unnecessary words are in the vocabulary of pure joy. From discovery to repeated exposure, the flavor and fragrance of saffron is continuously revelatory, like a great passion that leaves one yearning for more. …

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Indian Saffron and Rose Yogurt Mousse (Shrikhand)

Saffron_2

Whenever I reach for Keiko Mecheri Gourmandises, I anticipate the moment when its beautiful saffron laced rose begins to unfold. That aspect of the composition has such a delectable character that I cannot but think of other ways to enjoy it. Indeed, a perfect way to savor the lush, honeyed roses paired with the medicinal, leathery saffron is when they are embroidered upon the creamy canvass of yogurt. The ambrosial quality of shrikhand, an Indian dessert popular in Gujarat and Maharashtra, is addictive. …

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