Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Cumin Herb - Member Of The Carrot Family!

Happy Tuesday from our Florida Herb House!

It is a cloudy humid day with chance of rain all day here in Daytona Beach, Fl. Today we have picked Cumin as a blog topic for our spice of the month. One of our top selling herbs for the month of July is our Cumin seeds and powder. We have moved about 39 Lbs of cumin this month and climbing. We think summer brings a higher acquisition rate for cumin than in other seasons.
Cumin has been compared to that of Turmeric and Caraway for its aromatic and flavor qualities. The similarity ends there. Cumin seed is handpicked & dried before use, it grows on a delicate plant, similar to fennel. Tumeric on the other hand is a dried rhizome. The plant bears a similarity to ginger. Tumeric is boiled to intensify the yellow colour , then it is dried and powdered. Cumin is a relative of fennel and caraway but has a slightly bitter taste, and is often seen in curries and Mexican dishes, but also in some cheeses and as an herb in some digestive schnapps.
Our organic certified cumin seeds and cumin powder comes direct from premium growers in Turkey. The technical name for Cumin is Cuminum cyminum. Cuminum cyminum, Should not be confused with black cumin, the Chinese medicinal herb, or sweet cumin, better known as fennel, or caraway. Cumin is the seed of a small plant in the carrot family. Pungent, sharp, and slightly sweet, the greenish brown powder of this herb is an essential ingredient in Mexican cuisine.
Cumin is a great source for iron! Cumin seeds have traditionally been noted also as beneficial to the digestive system, and scientific research is beginning to bear out cumin's age-old reputation. Research has shown that cumin may stimulate the secretion of pancreatic enzymes, compounds necessary for proper digestion and nutrient assimilation.
Ground cumin should be kept in an air-tight container. Add to cooking in moderation; the pungency of cumin can overwhelm other flavors in a dish. Be forewarned that cumin stimulates the appetite and may increase lactation in nursing mothers.
All in all when using cumin from www.FloridaHerbHouse.com and www.SharpWebLabs.com remember that our herbs are pure and natural and when noted "Certified Organic" which means you get the best unrefined herbs ever. Cumin should be used in small amounts as when used excessively can overpower other herbs. Enjoy a cup of cumin and honey tea today! Below is our favorite cumin chili recipe that must be tried with our organic cumin!

1 1/2 tablespoons cooking oil
1 onion, chopped
1 green bell pepper, chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 1/2 pounds ground beef
3 1/3 cups canned whole tomatoes with their juice (one 28-ounce can), broken up
2 tablespoons tomato paste
1 tablespoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon fresh-ground black pepper
1 1/3 cups drained and rinsed canned pinto or kidney beans (one 15-ounce can)

In a large saucepan, heat the oil over moderately low heat. Add the onion, bell pepper, and garlic and cook, stirring, until the vegetables start to soften, about 10 minutes. Increase the heat to moderate. Add the ground beef and cook, stirring, until the meat is no longer pink, about 5 minutes.
Stir in the tomatoes, tomato paste, cumin, oregano, salt, and black pepper and bring to a simmer. Reduce the heat and simmer, partially covered, for 10 minutes. Add the beans and simmer, partially covered, until the vegetables are tender and the chili thickened, about 5 minutes longer.

Stephen C. Sharp