Turmeric – Curcuma longa

Turmeric is part of the ginger family and an absolutely gorgeous plant. It is native to India and requires rich, moist soil.

Though the plant may be a pretty sight it is the long orange root that is the real treasure.  When the plant starts to wither the rhizome is dug up. Turmeric Roots

The rhizome is cleaned and then it is cooked to make the skin soft and allow the beautiful orange-yellow color spread to all the tissues.

After it has cooked the outer layer is scraped off. The rhizome is then dried for about a week.

It is the rhizome of the turmeric plant we use for cooking and which has enormous health benefits.

Turmeric is often called the Indian saffron. It is used as dye for the robes of the Buddhist monks. Turmeric may be used fresh, dried or ground.

Culinary Uses

Turmeric can be used in a great variety of dishes. It gives color to curry powders and pastes.

 This spice has a warm and mild aroma.

It goes well with rice dishes, vegetables, poultry and fish.

The spice gives food a bright yellow color and is therefore sometimes used in cheeses, butter and mustards.

Some recipes of the tasty Moroccan marinade called chermoula include turmeric.


Turmeric Health Benefits

The health benefits of turmeric are so many and so awesome it is hard to know where to begin. One thing is for sure; you may just want to make sure you include turmeric in your cooking as often as possible.

Turmeric is a very powerful antioxidant and improves the immune system.

Turmeric lowers the harmful cholesterol and assists to limit the development of hardened and blocked arteries.

Turmeric helps prevent colds and fever.

Turmeric is good for the liver as it aids detoxification.

Turmeric aids digestion and is a wonderful spice for anyone wanting to lose weight. It has a positive effect on treating stomach ulcers.

Claims are also made that it lowers blood sugar which is good news for people with type 2 diabetics.

Studies are now being done if turmeric has a positive effect on slowing down Alzheimer’s disease.

This wonderful spice has qualities that also helps protect against cancer and strengthens the production of cancer fighting cells.

For external use; turmeric is used as a remedy for arthritis and skin problems like fungal infections and psoriasis.

Please always consult with your doctor if you suspect you have a serious disease. Make turmeric part of your everyday cooking, remember to follow trusted recipes. Enjoy!

Gaye Holud

Gaye holud – is part of the wedding tradition in Bengal. The ceremony takes place a couple days before the actual wedding. Gifts are given to the bride and groom.

The bride to be and the groom are smeared with turmeric paste by the guests. The bride to be and groom are kept separate.

“Holud” means turmeric. This is a cultural celebration, not a religious one. People from all religions participate in Gaye holud.

The turmeric softens and cleanses the skin, making ithe skin very beautiful before the actual wedding ceremony.