Thursday, October 20, 2011


What do carrot cake and apple cider have in common? Besides being signature fall favorites, they both wouldn't be craved without the help of cinnamon.

Native to Southeast Asia, cinnamon is harvested from the inner and outer bark of small evergreen trees from the genus Cinnamomum. The inner bark naturally curls into quills creating cylinders commonly referred to as cinnamon sticks. In Southeast Asian cooking, a few sticks are added, along with other spices, to hot oil and cooked until fragrant before other ingredients are added. Cinnamon is also used in ground form, which is freshest if made at home using a spice grinder or grater.

Cinnamon is used for it's intoxicatingly sweet woody scent and delicate yet vitalizing taste. Whether it's sprinkled in cake batter or dipped in cider, cinnamon is used throughout the world not only in sweet, but also savory dishes. It's combined with other spices to meats and vegetables as well as curries to maximize the succulent flavor. Wild Ginger adds the iron red spice to various dishes on the menu, including the Monk's Curry, and the seasonally available Sri Lanka Pork.

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