Is Saffron Spice worth the Money?
Before we get into the details of why let’s cut to the chase. Saffron is absolutely worth the money it costs to buy. While it may feel overpriced, there are actually several good reasons as to why Saffron spice is worth the money.
It is natural to question why you should even be interested in buying saffron at all. In this article we’ll run through a list of reasons as to why saffron is the most expensive spice spice in the world and how it has truly earned its position at the top.
If you value authentic produce, saffron is worth the money.
The highest quality of saffron is expensive. Why? Because it is hand-picked, dried and packaged using traditional Persian methods that date back centuries. The saffron stigmas are dried using sunlight after being harvested by hand. The saffron flower: crocus sativus, only grows under extreme temperatures and the soil has to be perfect to achieve a lustrous harvest. The threads are best picked in autumn, which limits the amount of time that saffron can be harvested year round.
But why is saffron more expensive than gold? Let’s put this into perspective.
It takes about 150,000 to 200,000 flower stigmas to make 1kg of dried saffron.
If someone decides to grow saffron and they start with 10 flower bulbs, within 10 years the farmer will have close to 1,000 flower bulbs and will have produced only 5 grams of saffron. These 5 grams of saffron are equivalent to 10 teaspoons.
When you weigh up the amount of labour, time and delicacy required to produce saffron, it can be determined that saffron is far rarer and harder to come by than gold. This is also why the saffron price by pound is so high.
However, saffron is not just expensive because it is rare and hard to grow.
Saffron is, in fact, irreplaceable.
An incredibly unique spice, saffron delivers a flavour that is unlike any other. Saffron is extremely versatile and can be used to upgrade any simple rice dish, smoothie, roast, salad, dessert, tea or any meal you can imagine. Saffron also can be used on the skin to improve complexion and texture.
It’s important to not be deterred by the high price tag when attempting to cook with saffron as a small amount of saffron goes a very long way. The flavour and potency of saffron is unmatched. Most recipes only require 2-3 threads of saffron per person and considering you can buy a gram of saffron for as little as $20, this is excellent value for money.
But that’s not all…
Delicious flavour, however, is only one of the countless joys that come with consuming red saffron threads. Saffron yields an array of health benefits that deliver important nutrients to people of all age groups.
The most sought after benefit that saffron has to offer is how rich it is with antioxidants. Quality saffron can help boost your mood, libido, sexual wellness, relaxation and overall mental health. Saffron has also been known to alleviate symptoms associated with depression and Alzheimer’s disease. Additionally, this super spice can lower your blood sugar and cholesterol levels too.
Saffron may no longer seem too expensive… but does saffron expire?
Saffron has an incredibly long shelf life when stored correctly. Storing saffron in an airtight container in a cool dark place can increase the shelf life to up to 2 years. While it is recommended to look for smaller quantities when buying saffron, the chances of it going off before it reaches its expiration date are slim to none as long as you take care of it.
Which saffron is the best?
Saffron is mainly grown in Iran, Spain, Greece, Morocco and India. While no variant of saffron is ‘the best’, each have different flavours.