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How to Use Saffron in Everyday Cooking

How to Use Saffron in Everyday Cooking

Saffron grown in Vermont is a wonder to many people- we might be familiar with saffron from Kashmir, Iran, or Spain. We might be familiar with traditional dishes like tahdig, risotto Milanese, or paella. But, maybe you’re curious about how to use saffron in your everyday cooking, if these dishes aren’t part of that? Let us help you a bit, going back to the basics.

When looking at a recipe, think about if saffron goes well with its flavors:

For sweets, saffron’s floral notes make a wonderful, surprising addition.

  • Milk based sweets, like frosting or ice cream go well with saffron.
  • Citrus or vanilla flavored desserts or pastries are delicious with saffron added.

Incorporating saffron into meals:

  • Savory flavors like garlic (or our excellent garlic powder), onions, shallots, ginger, honey, citrus, butter and cheese pair very well with saffron.
  • Meals based with chicken, seafood, and creamy pastas are all great places to start.

Implementing saffron into the recipe, you might wonder how to bring out its flavor:

  • As a dried spice, saffron prefers hydration & some heat to bring out its full flavor and color.
  • A small amount of saffron goes a long way. Just a pinch is sufficient for most recipes.
  • The first step is usually to grind the saffron. This is typically done with a mortar and pestle, but you can also used the back of a spoon.
  • A tiny bit of warm water will help the saffron bloom, allowing it to sit for at least 5 minutes (the longer the more flavor you’ll get out of your saffron). You can then add the liquid at any stage of the recipe you’d like.
  • With recipes using other liquids (cream, melted butter, broth, etc.) you can add the ground saffron directly to the warm liquid, and allow it to release its flavor for some time, with no extra preparation.

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