There are three types of saffron and many varieties of the one we use in this cookery article – green, yellow and black, which are all different things. The first two have different properties depending on the type of saffron and the quantity you are using.
Green saffron is the most widely available and is produced in the same way today that it was 100 years ago. Its colour is a deep ruby-red.
Yellow saffron is a deep yellow pigment and is best used for roasting meat. It only occurs once in every thousand years as it is a by-product of the dyeing process and it can only be found on the yellow-fruited (brassica oleracea) saffron variegata species. This plant is not native to the Mediterranean and was probably brought in from North Africa by ship.
Black saffron, on the other hand, is the darker pigment and not native. It has a reddish-brown hue and once in a thousand years can be found naturally only in Madagascar and Madagascar’s southern islands.
What is the best way to use this saffron?
The best way to use this saffron is to use it on roast meats such as lamb, beef and chicken. The dark purple colour can only be obtained using a strong colouring agent and will give the meat much more flavour than using a colouring agent which is used for roasting small animals such as chickens or guinea pigs.
What is the best way to use other types of saffron?
There are several different species of saffron available in Europe, and the most popular uses to which this type of saffron is used is as flavour agents for sauces, marinades, soups and casseroles.
The golden saffron variegata is the most popular variety – it is also very rare in the UK and the UK-based saffron producers often sell it on eBay.
A variety called white saffron is also produced. This is not widely used in the UK due to the lack of its colouring quality.
Finally, the black saffron variety has a white hue and is found primarily on the island of Madagascar and is grown to produce oil for cooking with.
A few tips
1. If your saffron can’t be found, or the price is too high, look a little harder somewhere else. When
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