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Food & Wine Ground >> Saffron. is it worth it?


6/5/08 12:07 PM
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alxholic
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 i stumbled upon a recipe that i want to try and it requires saffron.  i went to the store and this stuff cost like 27 bucks for a half oz.  the recipe only uses .1 oz.  so it is like 5 bucks worth for this little pinch that i would use.  

wtf?  what is this stuff?  why is it so expensive?

6/5/08 1:08 PM
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sloppy2nds
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 I like it in my sauteed strimp.

It's flower stamen.

6/6/08 11:39 AM
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westernwarrior
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Saffron is difficult to cultivate. One saffron plant results in a very tiny amount of saffron. That half ounce probably required several saffron plants to create. That's why it is so expensive. I like saffron but because of the price I obviously don't use it very often. Even a small amount has a strong flavoring and coloring effect, though. If you've never tried it then you should definitely give it a try.
6/6/08 1:03 PM
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Extendo
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Go to an Indian or Pakistani grocer. They will have saffron broken down into more reasonable amounts.

Personally, I love it. Especially in rice pulao, for both the colour and the taste.
6/6/08 4:56 PM
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alxholic
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 aight.. gonna take the plunge

6/6/08 8:09 PM
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TheAncestors
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It's the most expensive spice on Earth and justifiably too. Ignore the price tag, it's worth it!
6/8/08 1:03 PM
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Dankoholic
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my brother's in-laws are persian-armenian and they load up their dishes with this crap. i can't stand it. the taste isn't bad, but they tend to overdo it.
6/8/08 4:41 PM
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alxholic
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 http://alejandrocooking.blogspot.com/2008/06/saffron-rice-with-shrimp.html

 

6/8/08 5:56 PM
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TheAncestors
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Lightly crush some saffron into a few teaspoons of warm milk then let it infuse for a while. Then try that! I'm gonna hunt for a sweet lassi recipe I got somewhere... it's mind-blowing.
6/9/08 12:45 AM
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alxholic
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Edited: 06/09/08 12:07 PM
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you mean just to drink the milk straight with saffron?  sounds like a waste of some very expensive shit

6/9/08 4:58 PM
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TheAncestors
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Yeah I know but you don't have to use much of the saffron, only a few strands. I only suggested it as a good way to taste and smell the saffron on it's own. If you don't want to do that I'm trying to get the sweet lassi recipe from my girlfriend. She's a little bit mad at me right now but I will get it.
On a side note the above thing with the saffron in milk is usually a way of bringing out the flavour before you add it to something else, kind of like an egg yolk/cream liason. Honestly, though, it's expensive for a reason.
6/18/08 2:00 AM
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Izzy
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Just a tip:

You need to let the saffron "bloom" in an acid ie. wine or lemon juice to get the full flavor. It doesn't take much saffron so it doesn't turn out to be too expensive. I learned about "blooming" after numerous unsuccessful attempts at paella.
8/9/08 9:25 PM
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feralpig
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I made a chicken stew with saffron and leeks, it's delicious. Sort of a rich, earthy flavor.

so yeah, it's worth it.
8/18/08 7:20 PM
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TheAncestors
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You gotta wash the leeks, man....
8/19/08 10:06 AM
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Stronghold
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1 oz requires 100,000 flowers to produce it.

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