How to Buy Saffron
Did you know that saffron has been used for the treatment of around 90 illnesses for the past 4,000 years? William H. Honan, in his article Researchers Rewrite First Chapter for the History of Medicine, published in the New York Times, revealed this fact. At present, saffron is mostly used as a spice for adding an aromatic flavor to dishes. It also contributes to the look of a dish by adding yellow coloring to it. Although the spice is quite expensive, you can use a single pack for multiple dishes if you know how to store it. Before you buy saffron, you should pay attention to the quality and choose the right store for your purchase. Read on to learn some important tips on how to buy saffron.
How You Should Buy Saffron
It may put a dent in your wallet if you choose to buy saffron. Quite naturally, you would like to get value for your money. Here are some important tips that can be helpful when buying the spice.
1. Consider color strength – You must check the color strength of the spics prior to buying. The aroma, flavor, and yellow coloring depend a lot on the color strength of the item. According to the International Standard Organization (ISO), the standard color strength for saffron should be at least 190 degree. If you are a first time buyer, you should also note that the color strength of the condiment is generally labeled on the packet.
2. Choose between power and threads – You can buy saffron either in the form of power or thread. The threaded form is a better choice because it can be stored for long. However, it is important to note that you should use sealed container and store it a place that is away from light to preserve the flavor. Moreover, threaded saffron costs much less than powered saffron. It is also a good idea to compare prices of the two types before you buy saffron.
3. Check out the color of saffron – High quality items generally come in a bright red color. However, there are times when the product might look red but you might not be sure of the quality. Some saffron threads are dyed. In order to identify high quality products, look at the end of the thread. In general, high quality saffron comes with slightly faded color towards the end. So, it is better to avoid threads that come with even colors all through.
You can also consider buying organic saffron, which is generally good in quality. Most importantly, you should select a reputable store to buy saffron. Buying from ethnic or online spice stores can be a good choice. If you choose to buy online, inquire about the reputation and background of the store before buying.