Profile: Historically, this spice was used more as a coloring agent than a food. South and Central American tribes used the seed's pericarp to make cosmetics and lipstick. The lipstick tree is annatto.
Annatto seeds are found inside the spiny fruits of the achiote tree. Annatto has been used historically as a dye for cosmetics, textiles, and food. Many cheeses, such Mimolette, Red Leicester, and Cheddar, employ annatto to tint them orange or red.
However, many people are now using annatto seed as a spice. It's bittersweet with mace and mint undertones. Flavor and color oils with the seeds, or soak in boiling water to make a flame-colored soup. Spice up rice recipes or stews with a few seeds.
|Cuisine:||Caribbean, Latin American, Mexican.|
|Shelf Life:||3 Years|
|Basic Prep:||You can use the annatto powder in a recipe or convert it into an oil. Heat 1 cup grape seed oil with 2 oz. annatto powder. Cook for 5 minutes, or until the oil turns orange. Strain the seeds from the oil and chill.|
|Ways To Use:||With rice, grains, beans and chicken or turkey. It's used to cook veggies like okra and plantains.|
|Taste & Aroma:||Bitter or Astringent, Warm & Earthy|
|Country of Origin:||Peru.|
|Handling / Storage:||Store in a cool, dry place.|
|Allergen Information:||None Specified.|
|Dietary Preferences:||All Natural, Gluten-Free, Kosher Parve, Non-GMO.|