Turmeric Spice (Curcuma longa)
Turmeric has a warm, slightly bitter, peppery flavour and it has a mild aroma of ginger with a sweet note. It is a root which can be used fresh but is more commonly used dried and ground into a powder. Turmeric is probably one of the world’s healthiest spices having many medicinal properties.
This spice is native to Southern Asia and therefore plays a big part in the cuisine of theses countries. It is used in many dishes like curries, stews and soups. It is also delicious when added to fresh vegetables. When using fresh turmeric it is best to either chop it up fine or grate it.
Anti-inflammatory- This spice is an anti-inflammatory, with its active part called curcumin which is proven to be an effective anti-inflammatory. This is noted especially in the prevention of swollen and inflamed joints. It also provides great relief for those who suffer from rheumatoid arthritis.
Heart disease- Heart disease an heart attack prevention can be attributed to turmeric with its ant-inflammatory properties.
Inhibits cancer growth- Curcumin in turmeric also has the ability to inhibit cancer growth with its strong anti-inflammatory properties.
Vitamins- B12, C, A, D, E, K, Thiamin, Riboflavin, Niacin, Pyridoxine,
Minerals- Iron, Manganese, Copper, Zinc, Phosphorus, Calcium, Magnesium
Turmeric spice is commonly used in countries such as India, Pakistan, Thailand, Bangladesh and Iran. It is a spice that blends well with the foods and spices from these countries. As well as being a delicious spice that adds fantastic flavour, turmeric also gives a lovely yellowy colour to the dish it is cooked with. This is often the colour associated with curries.
Cooking with turmeric is great as it lends itself to many different dishes. It is delicious when used with chicken, potatoes, lentils, coconut, soups, relishes and chutneys. It is also used in some desserts.
I like to cook a Thai yellow curry which is not as spicy as other Thai curries. Yellow curry can be made using chicken, prawns and seafood. It also goes well with potatoes, pasta and of course rice. Buying yellow curry paste is easy to do online. Take a look at the recipe below and see how easy it is to make a tasty, simple Thai yellow curry.
Serves 3-4 people
2 large chicken breasts, skinned and thinly sliced
250ml of coconut milk
1 50g Lobo Thai yellow curry paste pack
2 medium potatoes peeled and cut into bite size chunks
1 onion cut into 1 inch sized chunks
10 baby corns, halved
1 cup of water
Fish sauce to taste.
Put a medium to large pan on the hob and add the coconut milk and bring to boil, then add the yellow curry paste and mix until dissolved and turn the heat down to a simmer.
Now add all of the chicken and give it a good stir, then add all the vegetables and again give it a stir. Bring to the boil again and then add the water, once its boiling turn the heat down and cover slightly askew with a lid, and leave for 40 minutes.
Once the potatoes are soft it is done. Season with some fish sauce if needed, and serve with rice.