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8 Recipes with the World's Most Precious Spice: Saffron

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8 Recipes with the World's Most Precious Spice: Saffron

Saffron is reputedly the most expensive spice in the world which comes from its difficulty to grow, harvest and produce. And while it should be used with attention, don’t let that stop you experimenting with some delicious saffron recipes.

The intensity of the golden yellow hue that saffron imparts in dishes as well the depth of distinctive flavour are difficult to achieve with any other spice. It's not hard to see why saffron is loved by many international cuisines.

Saffron comes in both threads and powder form which need to be used differently. The selection of recipes below use both. The advantage of saffron powder is that it can be added directly to a dish without toasting or pre-soaking and it dissolves easily into the food, evenly flavouring the entire dish.

Saffron threads are significantly more expensive but in terms of quality and flavour they add another level of  'je ne sais quois to a dish' and are particularly spectacular when you can see the visible threads in the finished dish. 

Experiment with both forms of saffron in these saffron recipes which range from Italian street food, arnancini,  Moroccan tagine and Indian style cauliflower, to the heady heights of risotto topped off with a gold leaf and even a lemony dessert.

KNUCKLE OF LAMB WITH SAFFRON POTATOES

Saffron adds depth of flavour and colour to this tasty meat dish of roasted lamb knuckle.

FRIED CAULIFLOWER WITH SAFFRON

This Indian recipe for cauliflower allows the white vegetable to take on the golden hue of saffron elevating the vegetable to exotic heights.

SAFFRON, POTATOES AND GREEN BEAN SALAD

A dash of saffron adds unexpected colour and finesse to this simple dish.

ARANCINI (DEEP FRIED RICE BALLS)

Saffron adds warmth and depth inside these fried balls of rice that form classic Italian street food fare from Sicily.

Rice Patties

Vegetarian rice patties with coriander and scallions, garlic, slightly caramelised and fried. The saffron gives the simple flavours another dimension.

Saffron Risotto

Saffron is integral to the classic Milanese risotto. The distinctive colour and flavour are famous in Northern Italy. This dish comes topped with a gold leaf.

Chicken Tagine

Saffron is widely used in northern African cookery, and where better than in a slow cooked tender tagine.

Lemon Bars

Saffron adds an edge to these vibrant sweets which will appeal to adults.

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