I am fortunate to have a great friend who sent me an entire pound of organic cinnamon and a wonderful aunt who shared with me her bounty of saffron given to her from her friend from Tehran, Iran. Due to these two powerfully healing, widely useful spices, I thought I would share!
Cinnamon has been used for centuries for treatment of such things as fever, diarrhea, bronchitis, colds, sinus congestion, sluggish digestion, poor circulation, intestinal infection and the list goes on! Cinnamon can help regulate blood sugar and cholesterol levels, It has also been used topically for scrapes and cuts.
Cinnamon scent can help lift depression, mental fatigue, nervous exhaustion, and improve concentration.
Cinnamon can be used in countless ways! I use it every day. I add it to my coffee grounds before brewing or dripping through the Keurig using my refillable pods. I also add it to tea, yogurt, cereal, fruit, cottage cheese, smoothies; it sweetens a veggie smoothie perfectly spaghetti sauce especially when making lasagna, other sauces, chicken, various bean dishes and of dessert dishes whenever I make them.
In order to let you to decide how to use your cinnamon here’s a link with many recipes instead of a single one:
You may already be aware that saffron is an expensive little spice at roughly $40/oz., this is due to the labor in harvesting it. It takes about 3 acres of the flower, crocus by the way, to produce 1 lb. of saffron. It is cultivated in many places but primarily in France, Spain, Sicily and Iran.
When using saffron it’s important to use only a tiny pinch; it’s flavorful and potent. Saffron contains a poison that acts on the central nervous system and damages the kidneys, large doses can have severe effects; one-half ounce (10-12 grams) is a fatal dose for humans; But don’t let that halt you from using it.
Saffron can be used in rice dishes, seafood dishes, chicken and stews. Here’s a recipe to get you started.
Saffron Chicken w/ White Wine
2 chicken breast halves cut into thirds
1 medium onion, sliced thin lengthwise
1 Tablespoon olive oil
1 Tablespoon butter
½ cup chicken broth
Pinch of saffron (roughly ¼ tsp.)
Juice of half a lemon
Heat the olive oil and butter, add chicken and sear on all sides. Add onion, wine and stock. Simmer 15 minutes until chicken is cooked and liquid is cooked down. Add Lemon juice and saffron, simmer 5 minutes more. Season with parsley and serve alongside rice seasoned with olive oil, pink Himalayan salt, freshly ground pepper and a pinch of saffron if desired.