How to Cook with Saffron Threads

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Saffron is an exotic addition to any spice cabinet, and it is by far the most expensive type of spice to be found in the world by weight. It has many health benefits and offers its own unique taste in any dish. In order to truly experience it in all its glory, you’ll need to give it some extra special care. This spice requires TLC beforehand in order to really taste its full, robust flavour.

Saffron threads come from the stigma of a crocus flower and cannot be machine harvested. Every thread is delicately hand picked, leading to its high cost. However, it’s worth the extra expense. Since a single thread is rich in flavour, you won’t require many threads in your dishes.

Adding too much saffron can give dishes a medicinal taste, so be careful and use only the amount of spice recommended in the recipe. When used correctly it provides a flowery and unique flavour to a dish that cannot be recreated with any other type of spice. Additionally, It provides a deep orange tone that gives certain recipes an exquisite colour.

Preparing Saffron Threads

In order to release the flavour of this remarkable spice, there is a specific process that must be followed.  You’ll need to soak the saffron threads in a hot liquid for at least 20 minutes to infuse the flavor and colour out of the threads. If you will be cooking something the next day, you can put the infusion into the fridge so it can sit overnight. When you’re ready to use it, you can either strain out the bits of saffron or leave them in the mixture. Please note that the liquid you are using should be hot but not boiling.

If you need to use the saffron immediately, you can simply crush it up between your fingers or with a mortar. It can then then be added to your salad dressing, stew, soup etc. However, you will find that you won’t get the same deep flavor by doing it this way. As well, some cooks prepare paella by first cooking the threads in a skillet to release the flavour.

Purchase the Best Saffron

When you’re shopping for saffron threads, it’s best to look for ones that are deep orange or red. These are the threads that will provide the most flavour. As well, the colour should be evenly distributed throughout the thread and there shouldn’t be any streaks running through them.

At Qualifirst we supply the best saffron in the world. Take a look at these quality spice threads at With saffron, quality really does make an important difference.