Cooking with Turmeric
This article was originally published in January 2017
One of the key ingredients in most curries, turmeric has been a cooking mainstay for several thousand years in India and Southeast Asia.
While we’re most familiar with dried, powdered turmeric in the U.S., fresh turmeric looks a lot like ginger root — in fact, it belongs to the same family as ginger and cardamom. Its stunningly bright orange color leads way to a warm, peppery, tangy flavor with a bit of earthiness.
The health benefits of turmeric are immense, and a little goes a long way. In general, all you need is 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon ground turmeric to season rice, beans, eggs and vegetables. You’re most likely to find fresh turmeric in the PCC produce department between January and March. Once it’s been peeled, grate it into your dishes or add thin matchsticks to salads. To get the most health benefits out of turmeric, combine it with a dash of black pepper to increase the bioavailability of its key compounds.