- Growing places
- Production technology
- Trade Development
- Useful properties
- Beauty and he alth
Surely back in the school cafeteria you took yourself a bun with fragrant spice and even then you thought about how cinnamon grows. In cooking, it is used quite often. It grows on evergreen trees up to 15 meters high belonging to laurel plants.
When you wonder where cinnamon grows in wildlife, you can find out that the plant is most often found in southern India and Sri Lanka. It has oblong-oval leaves about 18 cm long. The bunches of flowers make up the inflorescences and have a greenish tint. Unlike the final product, they have an unpleasant odor. Looking at the powder in a bag, you can not immediately understand how cinnamon originally looked, how it grows, what kind of tree it is.
In fact, these are purple berries 1 cm in diameter. These plants can be found on the islands of Sumatra and Java, western India, Vietnam and Brazil, Egypt and Madagascar. But of course you want to try the best product. The place where the most expensive cinnamon grows is Sri Lanka. The bark from which the spice is made here is very thin and soft, brown or light yellow in color. She just smells good.
Trying to feel it with taste buds, one can note the extraordinary softness and sweetness, even warmth. In China, Indonesia and Vietnam, a fake spice is produced - cassia, which is made from coarser layers of bark.
This amazing product is brought from distant countries. So how does cinnamon grow? It takes two years to fully mature and be ready for processing. When about a dozen shoots appear, the top layer is cut off from them and dried. This is how the rolled tubes that you might have seen on the packaging of the powder are obtained.
They are cut into pieces up to 10 cm in length, in the form of which the product is also often sold. These are 6 to 10 layers of thin bark, which form a single stick after it is separated from the trees. Next comes drying.
Watching how cinnamon grows in nature, producers usually pay attention to the fact that the bark is thin, because then the aroma will be the most pleasant. The sticks are stored for a long time, which is acceptable due to the long shelf life of the smell. To determine the quality of the spice, use the ekelle - a special unit. The very condition of the sticks after processing and storage is very important, and not just how the cinnamon grows.
Those products that are imported to Europe are considered low quality, although there are no significant differences in taste. Therefore, a powdered form is used for transportation.
After the product reaches the customers, they add it to chocolate and desserts, lollipopswith a sharp taste, liqueurs, they flavor alcohol and teas. In the countries of the Middle East, the product is used in the preparation of spicy dishes with chicken or lamb. Asians add it mixed with other herbs. The leaves are eaten by those people who can personally observe how cinnamon grows. The spice is interesting for the local population not only in dried form, but also in fresh form. There are also uses similar to our approach to using bay leaves. Americans add the substance to fruits and cereals. A good flavor combination is obtained with apples.
In Germany they also like to add this spice to sweets, mulled wine or pastries. It is also a great way to make a marinade tastier. Works great as an essential oil, as the product's antioxidant properties and ability to fight microbes are manifested. It should be remembered that this substance should not be taken uncontrollably. It is often found in cookies, tea, mulled wine, condiments and yogurt, and sometimes cosmetics. If you are carrying a baby under your heart, it is better not to use essential oils from the bark and flowers of this plant.
The peoples who could watch cinnamon grow in their land often used the spice during rituals and holidays. Today in Europe it is associated with Christmas. Her warm scent awakens everything that is kind and gentle in the soul.
The bark is harvested at the height of the rainy season, which lasts from May to October. It peels off the tree very easily. Of all the spices, this can be called one of thethe oldest, since it was it that man first began to use.
Mentions of her can be seen in manuscripts dating back to 2800 BC. There is evidence in the Old Testament that Moses used it in an embalming mixture because the substance has antibacterial properties. In Rome, sacred properties were attributed to this product. Nero burned a year's supply when the emperor's wife died. It is interesting that he himself took her life and wanted to appease the gods in this way, and then it was a very expensive pleasure, because at that time 350 grams of cinnamon was estimated at 5 kilograms of silver.
In the Middle Ages, this product was also interested. He got to Europe thanks to merchants from Arab lands, he was very much appreciated. When seafarers set out to find a waterway to India in the 1400s, Christians and spices were their main target.
In 1536, explorers from Portugal found thick brown forests and saw cinnamon growing. Photos of such places today can be found on the Internet, but at that time it was a real innovation. It was in Sri Lanka on the islands of Ceylon.
Then the trade in this spice began to actively develop, which brought entrepreneurs a lot of money. The Dutch became interested in such a business, who first occupied part of the island, and then conquered it all. In 1776, the British showed interest in the plant, although at that time the Ceylon land no longer had a monopoly, because the plantations appeared in otherlocations.
Today this product is used throughout the globe. When you go to a Spanish bar, you can order a tonic with gin, from which a stick of this plant will stick out. It is added to rice. Cinnamon can also serve as a substitute for black pepper when seasoning meat dishes.
At Christmas, the French eat fragrant cookies with this spice. It does not suffer from contact with other substances, but on the contrary, it is organically combined with many. It is added to cardamom, coriander, pepper and cloves, mace and bay leaf. In India, they produce "garam oil", in other words called "a mixture of warm spices."
The Chinese prefer pairings with star anise, fennel, and cloves, the Syrians with paprika, zira and coriander (the mixture is called "baharat", it is sprinkled with sheep meat).
Cinnamon is actively used in folk medicine for its excellent properties. It helps with bloating, improves digestive processes. Even sellers of medicinal plants in China have noticed this effect. You can easily get rid of nausea and diarrhea. Helps fight diabetes, according to recent research.
It is also believed that the use of this spice improves the response to insulin, improves blood sugar levels, as well as blood circulation. Only by inhaling the wonderful aroma of the substance, you can feel that the brain begins to work better.
If you want to keep the fragrance to the maximumlong term, place the sticks or powder in a container, close tightly and place in a dry, cool, dark place. You can leave them for a couple of months. To check the state of a substance, you need to analyze its smell. It should be sweet, soothing, woody, indicative of freshness.
Beauty and he alth
Also, this spice is credited with useful properties in the fight against excess weight. Some experiments have shown that if you eat ¼ teaspoon of this product before meals, sugar is better absorbed, its level in the blood drops. It is thanks to this that new fat deposits are not formed.
It is advised to use the spice as a substitute for sugar. The taste is sweet and natural, and the calories are much lower. Now this wonderful product is very easy to find, because it is in almost every store. It will make your meals taste better and make you feel better.