Saffron: a precious spice used and praised for its virtues since ancient times. In fact, multiple properties are attributed to saffron: a sort of “elixir of long life”. In Greek mythology it is said that the God Hermes used saffron as an aphrodisiac.
The cultivation of saffron belongs to the ancient past of Tuscany and today some companies in Valdarno carry on this tradition. Grown mainly in the Setteponti and Valdambra areas on the terraces among the olive trees.
What we use to give unmistakable color and flavor to many dishes, is the red pistil of the purple crocus flower, which after being dissolved in water it takes on the known yellow color. The bulbs are planted at the end of August and the flower picking begins around the end of September.
The harvest phase as well as the other parts of the manufacturing process are carried out strictly by hand, so as not to damage the pistils, which are subsequently separated from the rest of the flower and then dried.
Versatile spice it can be used both to enhance flavors and colors in dishes.