Turmeric - How To Use

(Also known as Indian Saffron, False Saffron and Haldi)


Is turmeric similar to ginger?

Turmeric in powder form comes from the root of a flowering plant that is actually part of the ginger family. It has a warm, ginger-like, floral fragrance, and a slightly woody and bitter taste. It imparts a similar hue to Saffron but lacks a distinctive flavour. Therefore, it works well with other complex blends, acting as a base with its earthy properties. When using turmeric, it's important to follow a "less is more" approach to avoid overpowering the blend with bitter notes. Turmeric adds pungency to curry and invigorates rice, vegetable stews and egg dishes. It plays a pivotal role in many masala blends.

India is the largest producer, consumer and exporter of turmeric. During mediaeval times in Europe, it was often used as an imitation of "Indian saffron" for dyeing cloth, although it didn't replace Saffron in taste. Like all herbs and spices, you should never expose turmeric to light. 

What flavours go with Turmeric?

  • Asparagus
  • Caraway
  • Cinnamon
  • Chilli peppers
  • Cloves
  • Corriander
  • Cumin
  • Curry Leaves
  • Ginger
  • Garlic
  • Honey
  • Paprika
  • Saffron
  • Sweet Potato

Our rich-in-turmeric Yemeni blend - Hawaij - is bursting with flavours like carawaycloves and coriander, showcasing the homage in this alchemy.  Advieh Mahi which is traditionally used in fish recipes of Persian origin is also ripe with flavours like turmeric, chillicumin and garlic

Health Benefits

Is Turmeric good for you?

Turmeric is high in trace mineral manganese and helps process fatty acids and cholesterol. Turmeric is said to aid digestion, blood circulation and cholesterol levels. The ancient system of Ayurvedic also suggests that it may remedy stomach and liver ailments with its antimicrobial, anti-inflammatory, antibacterial and antioxidant properties. Europeans have suggested turmeric for arthritis, asthma and the skin condition eczema. 

Interesting Facts

  • In the pre-Christian era, traders brought turmeric from Camelēr's land to the shores of North Africa and Persia for culinary purposes. Britain brought turmeric into the periphery as part of an all-purpose curry during Imperial India.
  • Turmeric, whiskey, and honey are essential components of classic South African hot toddy drinks. A special for soothing sore throats and clearing winter-induced colds.
  • The yellow we typically see in mustard comes from turmeric and not the mustard seed.
  • According to Aston University, Birmingham, Turmeric is a natural antivenom against King Cobra bites.
  • The city of Erode in India is the largest Turmeric producer globally, and its nicknames are the "Yellow City” or“Turmeric City." In Hindu rituals, turmeric is worshipped as a symbol of the sun.
Chief flavour profile

Turmerone and ar-turmerone: (earthy, musky and woody) The dominant earthy compound is found in a few other spices.  It is the minor compounds that leave room to complement other spices and herbs. Cumin, paprika and cardamom bring a rich smokiness and earthiness to unlock the depth of the key flavour compounds of turmeric.

Blends to try with Turmeric

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