“Whoa! This dish is yummy mom! What’d you put in it”? “Just, turmeric, salt, some chili and coriander powder” If you live in a South Asian or Middle Eastern country, then you’d probably have heard this conversation quite a number of times. Every household extensively uses the bright yellow colored spice, called turmeric, to flavor and brighten up almost all of their dishes. Derived from Curcuma Longa of the ginger family, turmeric is indigenous to tropical South Asia and requires temperatures between 20-30 degrees celsius aided with frequent rainfalls for growing. Apart from being a famous culinary ingredient in Indian, Persian, Malay, and Thai dishes, turmeric is also known for its medicinal and cosmetic properties. And the benefits associated with regular consumption of turmeric are nothing short of extraordinary either. Turmeric is gaining much deserved visibility for its antioxidant (prevents damages associated with premature aging, Alzheimer’s, and heart disease), anti-inflammatory, anti-tumor, liver detoxifying, and digestive-aiding properties. The benefits associated with turmeric cannot be substituted, however if you find yourself without it while preparing a dish, you can use some other spices or ingredients that will add a similar yellow hue to your dish, but each of the spices will have its own flavor. Continue reading to know about what are the possible substitutes for turmeric.
Substitute For Turmeric
Almost all curry powders have turmeric in powdered form as a key ingredient with other seasonings of similar flavors. So, if you ran out of turmeric but have curry powder, worry not for you can substitute it for turmeric. Curry powder will maintain more or less the same flavor that you get by using turmeric and won’t lose out on its benefits either. And who knows, the other seasonings present in the curry powder may end up leaving your dish extra tasty.
Considered to be a close cousin of turmeric, ginger, though may not bring that hazel color so famously related with turmeric, but will definitely bring a distinct flavor and fragrances to your dish, along with the antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and digestive aiding properties of turmeric.
The second most popular spice in the world after black pepper, cumin, known for its peppery flavor, can be substituted for turmeric in some of the dishes. Its grayish color won’t be able to substitute the fiery yellow looking color of the turmeric, but may bring in something distinct in taste. Cumin also contains high iron content.
It is a condiment made of seeds of a mustard plant and is a quite extensively used ingredient all over the world. Available in many varieties such as yellow mustard, deli-style mustard, American beer mustard, Dijon mustard, English mustard, sweet mustard, fruit mustard, herb mustard, and others; mustard is considered to be one of the best substitutes for turmeric. Yellow colored mustard can be used to substitute turmeric without losing out on the color. Also, it adds a distinctive flavor that makes it a popular culinary ingredient in the world. Different varieties of mustards can be used in cooking.
Although turmeric is not related to saffron, it is often referred to as Indian Saffron for being almost similar in color and smell and is often used in place of it. It adds a golden color to the dishes and a sweet aroma that is entirely its own, leaving your taste buds craving for more. But one thing that goes against the favor of saffron is that it is an expensively priced ingredient as large quantities of plants are used to produce small quantity of saffron.
You can also use any of these substitutes in combination with turmeric to try out what distinct flavors come out of your dishes. If not, then you can always come back to the turmeric substitute that tastes best according to your buds.