Cumin (Cuminum cyminum) is a member of the parsley family, and is native to regions between the eastern Mediterranean to India. These fragrant, little seeds have been used since ancient times. Some have even been found in archaeological dig-sites. Cumin is a staple spice in a variety of regional cuisines from: Mediterranean, Moroccan, Indian, Asian, Mexican, Spanish, Italian, Brazilian, and even Dutch. Cumin is also the the main spice that gives taco seasoning it’s bouquet.
This little wonder is packed full of health benefits, too. (You knew I’d get to this, it’s my favorite part!) Cumin is helpful with: digestion (it really is mouth-watering, because it stimulates your salivary glands); natural laxative (need I say more?); anti-fungal/anti-microbial/anti-viral (ingestible “bug-killer”); helps you sleep (the essential oil present, cuminaldehyde, is a relaxant as well as a stimulant); anti-congestive (helps you breathe when you’re gloopy); Vitamin C (boosts your immune system); source of calcium (900mg per 100g); lactation (stimulates secretions to increase supply/production); iron (65+mg per 100g); Vitamin E (great for your skin!); detox (helps your body get rid of toxins). Now if that list doesn’t have something you’re looking for, there’s always the fact that cumin smells wonderful!
I renounced prefab and packaged spice mixes ages ago. If I had known how easy it was to make an awesome taco seasoning, I probably would have ditched the store-bought stuff much sooner. This is the blend I throw (literally) together:Taco Spice 1/2 tsp cumin* 1/2 tsp chili* powder 1/2 tsp turmeric* * = Organic
:: When adding to Tofu Tacos, I start with sauteed onions and garlic in olive* oil. I crumble in extra-firm organic tofu and toss to mix. Then add the spices*, salt, pepper* and stir it up. It’s really nice if you add some roughly chopped-up tomatoes* and diced green onions*, too. Let your imagination go wild, and eat loads of colorful foods!