Tea is sometimes referred to as an infusion or “steeping” saffron. This is exactly the same principle you use in making any tea – the longer the saffron steeps, the stronger its flavor, aroma, and color.
Where saffron preparation differs from tea is that you can release saffron effectively in a hot liquid such as water, broth, or milk or in room temperature white wine, vodka, rosewater, orange blossom water, white vinegar, or citrus juice.
In other words, saffron’s chemicals respond positively to hot liquid or room-temperature alcohol and acids (citrus).
The amount of liquid is not important; use whatever is called for in your recipe or add just a teaspoon or two of hot water to a recipe, which will not harm it.
Then put the threads or powdered saffron in the liquid and leave it for a minimum of 20 minutes before you add this “tea” to the recipe. Do not remove the saffron threads from the liquid.
They continue to release aroma, flavor, and color for up to 24 hours which is why affronted dishes and breads always taste even stronger as leftovers. With more flavor, aroma, and color release than you would otherwise have, steeping saffron is the most economical way to use this spice.
Once you get comfortable cooking and baking with saffron, you will find the longer you steep your saffron, the less you will need per recipe.
A special note about toasting saffron: do not do it! It is unnecessary to dry saffron any further because it has already been processed to exactly the right dryness for either steeping or crushing into powder.
The only reason you might read elsewhere that saffron threads should be further dried prior to use is that lower-grade saffron may contain too much moisture for a good release of its aroma, color, and flavor.
All Type Of Saffron
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