SAFFRON AND MEDICINE
s a therapeutically plant, saffron it is considered an excellent stomach ailment and an antispasmodic, helps digestion and increases appetite. It is also relieves renal colic, reduces stomachaches and relieves tension.
During the last years it was used as a drug for flu-like infections, depression, hypatomegaly and as a sedative for its essential oils. It is also considered that in small quantities it regulates women's menstruation, and helps conception.
It is a fact that even since antiquity, crocus was attributed to have aphrodisiac properties. Many writers along with Greek mythology sources associate crocus with fertility. Crocus in general is an excellent stimulant.
SAFFRON IN DYEING
he basic ingredient of crocus is crocin, the source of its strong coloring property.
In antiquity it was a very rare and expensive substance and the colour it produced and signified a high status or royalty. Romans used it to dye their hair and the 'purple carpet' of saffron of Irish kings was such impressive examples.
SAFFRON IN COOKING
s a spice it is used for colouring and flavour improving while giving a distinct aroma and a beautiful golden colour. There is a great list of foods where saffron is added including cheese products such as cottage cheese and parmesan, soups, chicken and meat, various spirits, pasta and rice.
To use saffron, either infuse a few threads in a cup of hot water and add the coloured liquid towards the end of cooking, or crumble the threads and add directly to the pot. Alternatively, dry roast, crumble and then steep the crumbled threads. Unlike other spices, a good pinch will suffice to add flavour and colour most dishes.
Cook with red Greek saffron and indulge in its excellent flavour.