Saffron is composed of the dried stigmas of a fall blooming crocus and has the distinction of being the most expensive spice in the world because it must be hand picked, over 5,000 to equal an ounce. PureSpice sells only top-of-the-line Spanish branched saffron. The color is deep red and the fragrance superior. We've tried others - Israeli, Indian, etc. - but none compare.It is important to buy the saffron threads, not ground saffron, which is easily and often adulterated. These threads should be broken up and infused in hot liquid giving even color and flavor to the recipe. Turmeric is no substitute for saffron!Saffron is widely known as the necessary ingredient in paella, bouillabaisse, and rice dishes.