Saffron was used during Bible days in cakes and to color and flavor whole rains. Buddist priests dyed their robes with saffron, making them a brilliant yellow. Elderly women are used to gather the saffron threads from the flowers. It takes about 4,500 flowers to make a single ounce of dried saffron. No wonder it’s so expensive!
Saffron is good for the immune system and blood, so it’s a nice spice to use and a little goes a long way. My family licked their plates when I served them:
Chicken with Saffron
Special enough for company!Olive oil
1 generous pound chicken breasts (4 ) pounded out a bit
1 small red onion or equivalent shallots, sliced thin
Generous 2 teaspoons (2 nice cloves) or so minced garlic
1/2 cup white wine
1 1/2 cups chicken broth
1/4 teaspoon saffron threads – I added them to the chix broth to “bloom”
1/2 cup whipping cream
Parsley for garnish – opt
Pour a nice coating of olive oil in a saute pan over high heat. Season chicken with salt and pepper. Cook until golden and cooked through, but not dry, about 3-5 mins per side depending upon thickness. I turned it over halfway through cooking time – you’ll see a “cook line” halfway up each breast where the chicken has cooked. Remove and tent with foil to keep warm. Turn heat to medium, add a bit more oil if you have to, then add onion and garlic and cook until onion is tender, a few minutes. Don’t let garlic burn.
Deglaze with wine. Scrape all brown bits from bottom. Cook until wine is almost evaporated.
Add broth w/ saffron threads, simmer, and reduce for 10 minutes. Add cream. Stir to combine and bring to a gentle boil until reduced to a good, thick sauce, a few more minutes. Pour the sauce over the chicken. Sprinkle w/parsley.