Peter from Germany asks:
"I would like to know if colour determines the quality of turmeric. Some people say that if the ground turmeric has rich orange color, it is good quality. Others say the opposite, pale colour reflects high quality.
Could you please reveal the truth."
"Turmeric (Curcuma longa) is grown throughout Southeast Asia and varies immensely in it's subtleties.
Thai turmeric is used fresh, and is often sweeter and more aromatic than that grown in India. In Thailand, the fresh turmeric is grated and added to curry dishes, soups, stir-fries, fried foods, snacks, and desserts; in eastern Indonesia it goes into stews and curries.
Dried turmeric is earthier and slightly bitter, with notes of mustard and horseradish, and if overused can have medicinal, powdery aftertaste.
In India, Turmeric has been valued for over four thousand years, where it is essential for many dishes, but is also used as a cosmetic, as a dye, in traditional remedies, and in religious ceremonies. It is used both fresh and dried.
There are two main types of Indian dried turmeric powder: Light yellow Madras turmeric is most commonly available and is used primarily for curries, pickles, and mustard; Alleppey turmeric is darker in colour due to a higher portion of curcumin (turmericís colouring agent) and is noted for its fine flavour and earthy aroma with delicate notes of lemon and mint.
India is the primary exporter, although Peru and China are additional sources. Alleppey Turmeric is highly regarded for its deep yellow to orange-yellow colour. Chinese Turmeric, which is of comparable quality to Alleppey, is characteristically more brownish in colour."
Even more on turmeric...
Posted by Kurma on 21/12/06; 8:52:48 AM
from the Travel dept.