The uses of saffron are varied: chicken soup, rice dishes, and saffron bread are probably the most common. Any good bouillabaisse (fish stew) will feature saffron. Saffron risotto alla Milanese is a wonderful Italian rice dish made with arborio rice and Italian Parmagiano-Reggiano cheese. Easter is a time of year when saffron sales are especially high, as many Slavic and Scandinavian cultures have traditional bread, roll or Easter cake recipes featuring this spice. These recipes often call for almost a whole packet of saffron, which is why they are reserved for only the very special family occasions. The reason saffron is the highest-priced of spices is because of the intensive hand labor required to cultivate and harvest it. It is the stamen of a small purple crocus flower; it takes about an acre of land and 75,000 flowers to yield one pound of saffron. Each flower blooms for only about one week of the year, during which the stamens must be hand-picked and dried.
Try our Coupe Grade Saffron for an even deeper golden color.