Cinnamon (Cinnamomum verum) is a tree belonging to the family Lauraceae, which grows in India, Indonesia, Sri Lanka, Brazil and Vietnam and Egypt. It is one of the oldest spices that arises by drying the bark of a tree. The evergreen cinnamon tree reaches sizes up to about 10 meters in height. The characteristic taste and aroma of cinnamon makes it a frequent visitor in our kitchen, especially during this festive time.
What cinnamon should you choose?
Although there are four main varieties of cinnamon, two of them, Ceylon and Cassia are by far the most common. The most appreciated is the Cejlon cinnamon because of its sweet taste. This variety is softer and easier to grind. However, it is usually available in specialist stores. The Cassia variety is definitely harder and darker. Usually, she is the guest in our shop.
What to add cinnamon?
Cinnamon has a pleasant, sweet, spicy aroma and flavor. Its most important ingredient is volatile oils, tannins, resins, locks and starch. This spice is commonly used in gastronomy. It is suitable for sweet and spicy dishes. It is used for lamb, rice dishes, desserts and nut cakes as well as mulled beers. Cinnamon in sticks, however, is mainly added to compotes and fruit juices and wines.
Cinnamon known for centuries
Cinnamon has been used for medicinal purposes from the earliest times. In traditional Chinese medicine, it was used to fight colds, bloating, nausea and diarrhea. It was also used to improve the appetite and as a spice that adds energy and vitality. It should be remembered that some varieties of cinnamon contain large amounts of coumarin, a compound that can damage the liver. Let’s check, therefore, whether coumarin is found in products with cinnamon, as well as in the spices themselves, bought by ourselves.
Why is it worth to invite cinnamon to our kitchen?
The start of bark of the cinnamon tree relieves digestive problems and prevents nausea, bloating and diarrhea.
It is a great source of manganese, fiber, iron and calcium.
Studies have shown that only 1/2 a teaspoon of cinnamon a day can lower the level of bad LDL cholesterol.
Frequent and regular consumption of dishes with the addition of powdered bark of the cinnamon tree makes the risk of developing type II diabetes smaller. Some studies suggest that cinnamon may affect the regulation of blood sugar levels.
Cinnamon has adjuvant ability in the treatment of excessive fungal colonization of the gastrointestinal tract.
Research shows that the aroma of cinnamon improves cognitive functions and memory.
Researchers report that cinnamon combats E. coli bacteria. When added to food, it inhibits bacterial growth and spoilage of food, making it a natural preservative.
Gives a unique taste to dishes.