Interestingly, during the olden times, people believed that cumin will keep chickens and lovers from running away. They thought if newlyweds carry cumin during the wedding ceremony, they will have happy married life. Married soldiers were given fresh baked loaf of cumin bread by their wives before leaving for battles.
Even if we don’t believe these bizarre beliefs anymore, we do believe in love of loyalty of cumin seeds for our healthy bodies.
Cumin is the second most popular spice in the world after black pepper with numerous health benefits.
Where is Cumin Grown?
Originally Cumin was cultivated in Iran and the Mediterranean region but now its cultivated in many parts of the world, especially in southern Europe and India and china. India is the largest manufacturer (70% of globally produced cumin) and the greatest consumer of cumin (Indians consume 90% of produced cumin). India produces around 175.000 tons of cumin annually.
Appearance, aroma and more ….
Cumin seeds are oblong-shaped and yellow-brown colored. They have eight ridges on the surface. Cumin is sometimes confused with caraway seeds, but it has strong, earthy, warm flavor and gives peculiar aromatic character to the food. Cumin can be used ground or as whole seeds. Cumin is one of the very important spice used in tempering in Indian cooking. It is the basic ingredients of curry and chili powders.
1. Seeds of Good Digestion -Aids digestion
Thymol, from cumin, is known to rouse the glands that secrete digestive enzymes. This stimulation is responsible for the digestion of food in the stomach and intestines. Thus, cumin accelerates the digestion process, helping fight gut problems. Cumin helps with digestion by preventing the formation of gas in the gastrointestinal tract. Its carminative properties combat flatulence, which can lead to stomach aches and abdominal pain or pressure.
2. Fights Common Cold, relives cough and sore throat.
The essential oils present in cumin act as antiseptics and help fight viral infections which are the cause of common cold. Cumin also suppresses the development of coughing in the respiratory system since it dries up the excess mucus. Cumin helps strengthen the immune system and keeps infections from forming or becoming worse.
3. Cumin aids in weight loss.
Cumin is excellent for weight loss. Adding cumin to your diet increases metabolism, boosts your immune system, detoxes your body, and burns fat little faster. Studies showed that cumin is great at targeting belly fat, which most of us struggle to get rid of. 1 Teaspoon daily of cumin can help you lose body fat 3 times faster. - New research shows that cumin powder can not only help kickstart weight loss and decrease body fat but can also improve unhealthy cholesterol levels.
1. Cumin Weight Loss Drink: Soak 2 tablespoons of cumin seeds in 2 cups of water overnight and boil the seeds in the morning. Drink this water.
2. Chew a few cumin seeds to cure constipation.
3. Mix half a spoon of powdered cumin into a glass of pomegranate juice to get relief from IBS (Irritable bowel syndrome)
4. Cumin Tea for sore throat - Toast about a tsp of the seeds carefully over a low heat. Be careful (it should be lightly toasted making sure, it doesn’t burn otherwise the nutrition value will be lost) After about a minute or less, add a cup of water, bring to a boil and steep with fresh ginger, lemon juice and plenty of honey.
5. Add thyme to make a natural expectorant. Inhale the aroma and sip frequently.
Q. How can we use cumin while cooking?
• add to black beans to make them Cuban style
• add to lentils to make Indian dal
• add a pinch the next time you make guacamole
• cumin also makes a great rub for lamb or pork or add to meatloaf
• it makes a great addition to omelets
• cumin is also great to jazz up rice, couscous or quinoa.
• add a few teaspoons of ground cumin to your favorite roasted veggies like potatoes or roasted chickpeas or nuts
• Blend ground cumin with chili powder, garlic powder, onion powder, paprika, and ground red pepper for your own signature taco seasoning.
• Add a dash to mayo or hummus for sandwiches and dips