What do you do with saffron?



cataplana dish mixed in broth with a pict of saffron and smoked Spanish paprika

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Provençal fish soup.
Creme fraiche, dijon, saffron, butter → “beurre blanc” sauce for scallops.


And in tagines and stews.

Lots of saffron in Sephadic chicken stew I ate in Fez, Morocco.

Had to order a day in advance.


In Indian cooking, saffron is used for all kinds of sweet and savory applications, but always sparingly given the cost - and also strength of flavor.

A favorite sweet application is a hung curd (yogurt) dish that’s sweetened with sugar, flavored with saffron and cardamom, and garnished with finely chopped nuts.

On the savory end, the rice for biryani - an elaborate, layered, meat and rice dish - always has saffron.


Saffron was extensively grown in the UK between the 14th and 19th centuries. In the county of Essex, it was such an important crop that the town of Chipping Walden changed its name to Saffron Walden in the mid 1600s. Nowadays, it’s used as part of our magpie cuisine, rather than anything traditionally British (as far as I know). It’s still grown on an albeit very small scale - https://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2013/nov/16/meet-the-saffron-producer-uk


What’s in the bottles?

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Very interesting. Different prep method… typically we put it in warm milk or water for half an hour… though in desserts where it’s incorporated it does indeed continue to steep, and you can see the color continue to leach.

When I was at the grand bazaar in Istanbul, there were piles and piles of fake saffron everywhere - I couldn’t understand how they got away with displaying it, or who was buying it when it was clearly fake. :thinking: From this link, it seems what I saw there was the safflower version.

I’ve used Indian (from Kashmir), Spanish, and Iranian, and tbh I thought they were all about the same, even though the marketing and prices can be wildly different.

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Also re the recipe - having a tough time imagining mackerel and saffron together…

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Me too. Although maybe not as much as the “orange oil”, whatever that it!.

Regarding fake saffron, I always recall Spanish members of the extended family, using sachets of maize powder if only colour was wanted. That was many years back. I’ve not even looked for it in recent trips as, although we always go self catering, we don’t actually self cater.

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A thread on saffron tea:


chestnut honey is the reddish burnt sienna color.

Accacia in italian or Acacia in Spanish or English, is a flower species … it is honey …

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The bottles or jars are not saffran.

They are 2 Types of honey …


I once had a small bottle saffron vinegar, bought from small French producers, it was very good, not something that one sees often though.

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Very interesting.

Flos is a small Italian boutique producer of Saffran.
The owners, are Friends of dear Friends of our´s.

Thanks for the feedback … Have a lovely weekend.

Lovely products and all are “biologique” or ecological …

Yes, saffran vinegar is amazing.

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I remember eating (non oriental) desserts with saffron.

Kashmir - Soft biscuit with almonds base, compote of orange and date perfumed with saffron, crème brûlée with saffron, and vanilla mousse. (From Des Gâteaux et du Pain)



Wow … Exceptionally remarkable !

Looks wonderful !!!

To All,

Thank you for all the ideas, using Saffran.

Have a great weekend.


Provençal Fish Soup, this is a fine idea.


Spanish Saffran, is profilically grown in the Toledo Province of Castilla La Mancha and the harvest season is September 28th - or the last week of September.

I use it in our Spanish Rice dishes.

In my Risotto, I prefer the Italian …

Asian Cuisines & Mid Eastern or North African: I tend to avoid preparing at home due to the fact that the ingredients are not so easy to get my hands on, and even when we can, what do we do with the left over ingredients and the key: if they are not ecological or bio, I shall not purchase … We like to know what we are eating …

I made a fish Tagine, however, all the ingredients were standard and easy to purchase.

So, we prefer to dine out or lunch out cuisines that are not Mediterranean on occasion.

We have alot more Access to Mediterranean Markets and local Barcelona and Girona farm ingredients based in Spain. And dear Friends in both Italy and Provençal France.