At a price of $2,000 to $10,000 a pound, saffron is considered the most expensive food on earth, way more than truffles, caviar, and real balsamic vinegar. Why is saffron so expensive – it is because
of the labor needed to produce saffron – it is so labor intensive!

Each flower, which blooms for one week of the year, produces about three stamens, which must be picked by hand. The best saffron is harvested seasonally and carefully dried in the sun or over a low
fire. Saffron is best when fresh and loses its potency over time.
The tiny red threads of saffron must be handpicked from the center of the crocus flower. They leave behind the yellow stamens which have no taste. This spice comes either powdered or in threads (the
whole stigmas). Less-expensive saffron powder is often made from poor quality saffron or old saffron.

Saffron is especially good when used in cooking seafood dishes such as bouillabaisse and paella. It is also used in risotto and other rice dishes. Try adding some to your next beef stew or tomato-based
sauce. To make a wonderful marinade for fish, add saffron threads, garlic, and thyme to vinegar. Saffron is also used in bread and cake cooking. Use your imagination and be creative when using saffron in your cooking.