5000 years back, ancient Egyptians used cumin not only to spice their food… but would you believe, they also use it in their mummification process. It even has a reference in the Holy Bible where it is said that the knowledge and practices of beneficial farming of cumin came from God. The Romans and Greeks use it as spice and medicine. This spice was even used to pay debts and taxes.
During the Middle Ages, one of the most common spices is cumin and was thought to foster love and faithfulness. It was believed to keep lovers from wandering and married soldiers back then were sent off with fresh cumin bread baked by their wives.
Cumin originally came from the Mediterranean. Today, it is grown in many countries including India, Mexico, Malta, and China. This herb is mostly associated with Mexican, Spanish and Vietnamese foods, and is also widely used in Indian and Middle Eastern cooking. It is a small seed that comes from the Cuminum cyminum herb. They come in white, black and amber colors. They look like caraway seeds, but are much lighter in color. Cumin has a very distinct warm aroma and flavor that makes it a favorite of many.
Now, it is interesting to know that its health supporting substances are impressive too!
This Superfood is an excellent source of:
- Iron - which is needed by blood cells to transport oxygen from the lungs to all the tissues in the body. This is also great for persons suffering from anemia.
- Magnesium - known to promote heart health by controlling blood pressure, as well as aiding in calcium absorption.
- Vitamin C and anti-fungal properties that can cure colds and some respiratory problems.
- Vitamin E which acts as an antioxidant to fight free radicals that causes pre-mature aging. Regular usewill make you look younger.
- Cuminaldehde - a compound that helps lower blood sugar. Great for people with Diabetes.
- Thymoquinone an anti-asthmatic substance which acts as a bronchodilator that reducesinflammations.
- Dithymoquinone and Thymol - anti-carcinogenic agents for treating colon and breast cancers.
Experiencing skin itchiness or body heat? Here’s what you do… boil some cumin in water and let it cool down then take a refreshing bath. Now that’s Fantastic!
Cumin is also a great to use in cooking. It’s best to roast them lightly before adding them to your recipe to enhance their full flavor and aroma. Add them to your salad mix or brown rice to give it a feeling of heartiness. For a delicious dish of legumes, sprinkle some cumin for a surprising intense flavor.
Care for a cup of Cumin tea?
Picture courtesy of http://greatist.com/health/ultimate-guide-spices