Saffron is one of the most precious spices in the world. The thread like red stigmas—and the yellow hue they impart—are quite literally the stuff of legend.The spice originates from a flower called crocus sativus—commonly known as the “saffron crocus.”
Its recorded history is attested in a 7th-century BC Assyrian botanical treatise compiled under Ashurbanipal, and it has been traded and used for over four millennia. Iran now accounts for approximately 90% of the world production of saffron so Saffron and Iran are uniquely linked together.
Saffron is extremely subtle and fragrant. The slightly sweet, luxurious taste is totally enigmatic—it’s tricky to describe but instantly recognizable in a dish. As annoying as it is to say, you know it when you taste it.
Sargol saffron is actually what is in most people’s minds of iranian saffron. In this type, the cream part (root) is completely eliminated and the red Kolaleh separately form pure saffron and its coloring power is between 210 to 260.
Other names are Sargol, premium (Momtaz), SarGhalam and SarRishe [in Persian name].
Sargol Saffron (high quality) can be divided into two grades depending on the coloring power , length and thickness of the break rate and softness existing in it .
• Super quality Sargol
• High quality Sargol
If the red color and big stigmas of Saffron are separated in form of three branches connected to each other without style ( the yellow color part) from the flower, a voluminous Saffron will be obtained which is the most precious and prestigious type of Saffron and it is called Pushal Negin Saffron .
Negin saffron is all red saffron. Its coloring power is between 230 to 270. Based on the amount of cream (white saffron) to Kolaleh (saffron red), it includes saffron, straw, head flower and jewel. Negin saffron is the best type of saffron because it has the lowest amount of white compared to other types of saffron and in fact
When separating white or saffron cream, extreme care must be taken to keep the Kolaleh connected in 3 branches. Of course, sometimes the Kolaleh are separated. On the other hand, the lowest amount of white should not remain on the red part.
How to dry saffron also affects the final quality of Negin saffron.
If the drying time of saffron is prolonged (traditional methods) and the amount of heat used is not standard; It causes saffron strands to wrinkle.
Pushal Saffron contains red saffron Kolalehs (red part) with a portion of cream (white part) .
Pushal (Straw) Saffron is in fact the red stigmas connected to each other with a 1 to 4 millimeter of style or yellow root of Saffron flower and because of presence of greater style, its coloring power is greater.
Saffron Pushal is produced at the beginning of the harvest season. Due to the fact that there is a part of cream with saffron Kolaleh, the residues of flowers in this type are higher and weigh about 5-10%. On average, about 10 kg of saffron is obtained from 101 kg of saffron flowers. Poppy saffron with a long cream attached to it is known in Spain as “Mancha“.
The price of pushal is cheaper than other types of saffron, ie Negin saffron and Sargol saffron, because along with saffron Kolaleh there is some cream and the price of cream (root) is much cheaper than Kolaleh.
In order to dry the pushal, it is done in such a way that the red saffron strands have the largest volume. In this case, the saffron strands swell and twist and coil inside. As a result, they look more voluminous and beautiful.
Bunch Saffron (another name is: Dasteh Saffron) is the most complete type and the main type of saffron.
In this type, the whole saffron is dried together from the root to the kolaleh (red part). Saffron is one of the important agricultural products that has a significant role in the Iranian table and contrary to the opinion of the people, saffron is not only its short and red part, but also its root (white part) has its aroma.
Due to the fact that saffron has been classified by women, this type of arrangement is called a girl’s screw handle or “Dokhtar Pich (دخترپيچ)“.
In the ranking of the National Organization for Standardization, this type of iranian saffron it is classified in 4 degrees.
The color of this type is between 120 and 150 units.
The main features of the Bunch Saffron
These features include:
When we separate the head from the bunch, the root or white part, which in Iran is called the corner or white of saffron, remains, which cannot be considered saffron. This part is known in Europe as white or white or style (cream).
Saffron corner is not included in the category of saffron varieties. Contrary to many people’s beliefs, sesame seeds have a more fragrant scent than sorghum. Scientific studies and analyzes show that valuable items are hidden only in the red stigma of saffron. These substances, especially crocin (saffron dye agent), have been transferred from the stigma to the cream due to the movement in the plant tissue, but because there is more moisture in the cream, it seems that more perfume than cream B is inhaled. At the same time, due to its beautiful appearance and eye-catching color, and the fact that it cannot be considered counterfeit, it is considered.
Each flower produces only three threads (stigmas) of saffron, and it blooms for only one week each year. The saffron must be harvested—by hand!—in the mid-morning, when the flowers are still closed in order to protect the delicate stigmas inside. It takes about 1,000 flowers to produce just one ounce of saffron.
Saffron is the most expensive spice in the world .
The reason for its hefty price is its labor-intensive harvesting method, making the production costly.
Saffron is harvested by hand from the Crocus sativus flower, commonly known as the “saffron crocus.” The term “saffron” applies to the flower’s thread-like structures, or stigma.
It originated in Greece, where it was revered for its medicinal properties. People would eat saffron to enhance libido, boost mood, and improve memory.
Here are 10 impressive health benefits of saffron: