Saffron is the dried stigmas of saffron flower which used to color and flavor foods in cooking.
Saffron is actually the dried stigmas of the Crcus sativus Linnaeus, which flowers just once a year. Every day during the one-month harvest season that starts around mid-October more than four hundred thousand people in southern get up before dawn to go to the fields and pick the beautiful delicate lilac flowers that have bloomed overnight. They must be picked before being exposed to too much sunshine. The flowers are then carried in wicker baskets to the processing areas where the stigmas are patiently removed by hand.
The next step is to gently toast the stigmas in order to dry them before they are tested, sorted, packed and sealed, insuring that the full, unique and exquisite flavor, aroma and color of this "vegetable gold" reach the consumer.
Saffron product is mainly used to color and flavor foods in cooking. Beside its application as a flavoring and coloring material, saffron is also used for it high content of vitamins in a way, saffron has been classified based on high content of riboflavin (vitamin B2) in it (about 100 mg/g); then it can be an important source of vitamin. Studies made on Rat indicated that 150 mg Saffron bears beneficial effects equivalent with 40 mg pure riboflavin. In different Thiamin (vitamin B1), Vitamin B6 and Vitamin C.