Product: Nigella Seed
Latin Name: Nigella sativa
Plant Family: Ranunculaceae
Other Names: Black Seed, Black Onion Seed, Black Cumin Seed, Kalonji, Kalonjee, Schwarzcummel, Sinouj, Nutmeg Flower, Black Caraway, Habba Sowda, Fennel Flower, Cheveux de Vénus, Nigelle, Chernushka, Niguilla, Nigelo, Sortkommen, Thian Dam & Hak Jung Chou.
Description: Nigella seed comes from an annual flowering herb, native to south and southwest Asia and is now found growing throughout the Mediterranean. It grows to a height of 20–30 cm and has upright, branching stems. The herb has two kinds of leaves; the lower leaves are small and petiole, whilst the upper leaves are linear, finely divided, bright green in colour and approximately 6-10cm in length. The 5 petaled flowers grow terminally on each branch of the stem, and are white in colour. The seed head is a capsule, comprised of 5 ‘compartments’ each compartment contains numerous white seeds approximately 3mm in length, that ripen to black when exposed to the air, the seeds are 3 sided with ridged edges.
Brief History: Dioscorides, in the 1st century A.D. wrote that Nigella seeds were taken to treat headaches, nasal congestion, toothache, and intestinal worms. The Egyptians were fond of this herb so much so that a jar of seed was discovered in Tutankhamen's tomb. Old Assyrian herbals show vermifuge properties for nigella along with the ability to prevent itching.
Ingredients: The dried whole seed of Nigella sativa.
SUGGESTED USENigella seeds can be added to curries, soups and casseroles, they have a nutty, mildly peppery taste with a slightly cumin like edge, dry roasting the seeds prior to cooking with them enhances the flavour of the seed. Nigella is a key ingredient in the Bengali spice blend known as panch phora or panch puran. Sprinkle the seeds over dahl, bread, savoury muffins and flatbreads, stir into rice and grain dishes, pickles, chutneys and scrambled eggs and omelettes.
Shelf life of two years provided that goods are stored in an airtight container in ambient conditions.
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