Friday, January 22, 2010
If I had to pick one spice, I wished clients used more in their cooking it would be turmeric. Turmeric is one of the spices used in curries but also what gives yellow mustards their color. In Chinese and Indian medicine turmeric has been used for centuries as an anti-inflammatory. Turmeric is helpful for my sports nutrition clients as it decreases joint pain. Turmeric is also a potent antioxidant and has been shown to slow the growth of cancer cells. Turmeric may also help your liver clear LDL cholesterol and lower cholesterol. It is especially interesting to note that in India where turmeric consumption is very high, Alzheimer’s rates are extremely low.
I asked my friend John Marsh, the chef at the Green Door Café for a non-curry turmeric recipe. This one sounds great.
Potent Antioxidant Chicken Broth with Turmeric
1, 2-3 pound all natural chicken
3 legs of celery
1 medium white onion
Chop all except the chicken
2 bay leafs
3 black peppercorns
4 quarts water
1 tablespoon ground turmeric
Bring all to a boil; reduce to simmer for 1 hour remove chicken, let cool. Strain solids out of the broth. Remove chicken from carcass and dice. Add your favorite vegetables diced, simmer 5 -15 min depending on how soft you like your vegetables. Add diced chicken, salt and pepper to taste and serve.
Turmeric works well in dips, egg salad and lentils. Chef John recommends organic turmeric from Whole Foods or Fairway. He also uses turmeric with fish, especially snapper and grouper, and says it's great in preparing risotto or any other good rice dish. I also would like to point out turmeric is available in capsule form in one of my favorite supplements called Zyflammend.
In case you’re not convinced (how could this be?) turmeric, in a 2009 Tufts study, showed promise as a weight loss aid…in mice.
What are your favorite spices? Any other turmeric recipes or ideas?