Saffron is one of the most popular condiments in Spain, especially for cooking most rice dishes. Its flavor, color and aroma make cooking with it the dishes acquire a very characteristic reddish color.
This ingredient can be used for desserts, pasta, meat, stews or fish, but the most popular in Spain is to use saffron for paellas.
How to cook with saffron?
There is not a single way to cook with saffron, but of course if you know how to use it well, your dishes will have a spectacular flavor.
Is it expensive to cook with saffron?
The high price due to the high cost of production and the finesse of this spice make it treated as luxurious. The plantation and collection are carried out by artisanal means, being the dawn the suitable moment and needing to separate the stigmas of the flower, that is the part that we are going to use, of immediate way. The rest is discarded. This task is completely handmade and approximately 150,000 flowers are needed to obtain 1 kilogram of saffron.
This makes the idea that it is very expensive to use saffron to prepare your dishes, but then you can read a series of tips to know exactly what is the right amount of saffron to extract the most out of all your meals and dismantle that false myth.
This spice is used to enhance the flavor of food and also can sometimes replace salt. For its intense flavor should not be used more than 5 strands per person and, if you opt for the milled variety, the appropriate amount will not exceed 30 milligrams.
You can acquire it ground and ready to consume by adding it to the broth of your stew, previously dissolved. You can dissolve it in a few tablespoons of warm water if you find it more comfortable.
Saffron in threads
Before consuming it, it is advisable to toast it lightly or crush it in a mortar, although this way you will not be able to extract all its power.
How is it toasted?
You can wrap the strands in aluminum foil and pass it through a heat source, such as a gas stove or a lighter, for eight or ten seconds, without moving it or you can do it in the microwave in a suitable container for 15 seconds.
Amazing recipes that you can make with saffron
Rice With Rabbit
For this you will need a rabbit, green pepper, a spring onion, a tomato, half a red pepper, a small carrot, oil, salt, 300 grams of rice, saffron and twice as water as rice.
Chop and sauté all the vegetables in a paella pan with oil. Once its golden add the chopped and well seasoned rabbit. In about five minutes you will find it golden brown, time to throw the rice and sauté.
Then add the boiling water along with the saffron. Let it cook for 10 minutes and rectify salt if necessary. Put it in the oven for ten more minutes and serve.
Saffron mushrooms with polenta
For two people, you will need 50 grams of ricotta, 200 grams of mushrooms, a spring onion, half a lemon, a clove of garlic, 200 milliliters of white wine, olive oil, water, salt, tarragon, some strands of saffron, cilantro and basil.
To prepare the polenta you will need 25 grams of butter, 100 grams of polenta, 500 milliliters of water, 4 spoons of flour, salt, olive oil and a pinch of chili.
Chop the garlic and onion very thin. Put them in a pan with oil. Add the whole mushrooms and clean and season. Toast the saffron and incorporate it. Add the white wine, let it evaporate and add a few drops of lemon juice and fresh tarragon leaves. Add water and cook over low heat for one or two hours.
For the polenta, boil a saucepan with water and salt, add the polenta little by little, add the butter and stir until it thickens. Pass it to a source and cut it, once cooled, on sticks.
Mix the chili with the flour and coat the polenta canes. Now, fry them in a pan.
Serve the mushrooms accompanied by the sauce with ricotta cheese, the polenta and sprinkle with chopped basil and cilantro.
Caldereta of cuttlefish with Saffron
For 6 people will need a pair of cuttlefish, fish bones, an onion, four potatoes, a couple of cloves of garlic, a tomato, a green pepper, water, saffron, bay leaf, parsley, oil and salt. With the thorns, the parsley and the onion, a good time of 15 minutes well seasoned and strained. Cook the chive until soft. , add the diced pepper, sauté, grate tomato and incorporate and cook for at least 5 minutes more.
Cut the potatoes and add to the casserole, clean and peeled. Then add the chopped and seasoned cuttlefish. Add the broth, a bay lea.
Crush the garlic with the saffron and a little broth. Add it to the casserole when it breaks to boil. Rectify salt and cook for half an hour.
What was not so hard? Dare to become a master of saffron.