A bluffer’s guide to cinnamon - I Quit Sugar

One of Australia's most influential food bloggers/author Sarah Wilson has created this interesting blog about cinnamon here it is;


Considered more precious than silver or gold and used as currency in ancient times, cinnamon is now being touted as one of the top super foods around. A great reason to feature it in our latest instalment of “A Bluffer’s Guide to…”

Today it’s all about cinnamon
Perhaps one of the more popular spices on the spice rack, cinnamon lends itself to both sweet and savoury dishes. Derived from the brown bark of the cinnamon tree, it has a long culinary history as both a spice and a medicine. We love the sweet, warming taste when we’re craving a sweet treat without the sugar.

Health benefits of cinnamon:
It lowers blood sugar levels: This makes it perfect for dealing with sugar cravings. It helps by preventing insulin spikes after meals. Sprinkle it on carb rich veggies like sweet potato and it will help lessen it’s impact on blood sugar levels.

It aids weight loss: Cinnamons effect on insulin levels means it keeps you satisfied for longer and allows you to eat less. When less sugar is stored as fat, this translates to easier weight loss.

It’s an anti-inflammatory: This study found that cinnamon extract helped suppress inflammation in mice.

It boosts brain activity: Eating cinnamon significantly elevates the level of sodium benzoate in your brain. A recent report in the Journal of Neuroimmune Pharmacology found that sodium benzoate has many important positive effects upon brain function and that eating cinnamon may prevent a variety of age-related neurological disorders like Alzheimers and dementia.

It’s anti-microbial: Cinnamon helps stop the growth of bacteria as well as fungi, including the commonly problematic yeast candida. Cinnamon’s antimicrobial properties are so effective that research shows it works as an alternative to food preservatives.
It reduces the risk of cancer: Studies show that cinnamon oil helps to impair the growth of tumors, gastric cancers and melanomas.

It’s high in antioxidants: Cinnamon rates number three on the ORAC scale. This study suggests cinnamon has sufficient antioxidant properties.

It’s beneficial for bone health: One teaspoon of cinnamon has 0.33mg (16% DV) Manganese, 0.76 mg (4% DV) Iron, 24.56 mg (2% DV) Calcium. Manganese works as an enzyme activator and plays an important role in building good structure and bone metabolism. Calcium cannot be produced by the body, so needs to be absorbed through food.

It helps with PMS: Because of the high levels of Manganese, cinnamon may be an excellent candidate to ease the symptoms of PMS. This study showed that women who ate 5.6 mg of manganese in their diets each day had fewer mood swings and cramps compared to those who ate only 1 mg of manganese.

Different types of cinnamon: You can buy ground cinnamon or cinnamon quills. Quills are generally added to a dish to infuse it with flavour, and then removed.

Where to buy cinnamon:
Cinnamon can be found in the spice aisle of all major supermarkets and health food stores

How to store cinnamon:
Ground cinnamon and cinnamon quills should be kept in airtight containers in a cool dark place in your pantry and they’ll last up to three years. To check if cinnamon is still fresh, taste a little bit. If it’s lost it’s flavour and stale it has gone off.

Delicious ways to cook with cinnamon:
As we mentioned earlier, the beauty of cinnamon is that it can be enjoyed in both savoury and sweet dishes.

There is hint of cinnamon in our Leftover Veggie Bread. It also tastes great spread with ricotta cheese and an extra dash of cinnamon to sweeten it up without adding honey.
Our Fruit-Free Bliss Balls are a delicious and satiating snack with a hint of cinnamon.

Enjoy this sweet treat for breakfast or an after dinner treat: Combine ½ cup plain full-fat yoghurt, ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon, ½ teaspoon rice malt syrup, sprinkle of walnuts and a pinch of coconut flakes.
Make a batch of our Coco-Nutty Granola. The mix of cinnamon, nuts and coconut is a taste sensation.
Sprinkle cinnamon through porridge for a warming winter breakfast.
Try Sarah’s delicious Slow Cooked Cinnamon Beef Cheeks.

What would a chai tea be without a good hit of cinnamon? Add extra ground cinnamon to store bought chai’s or make your own by steeping a broken cinnamon quill in hot water and almond milk with black tea, cardamom pods, cloves, ginger and fennel seeds.

Even simpler: Warm milk of your choice on the stove with 1 teaspoon cinnamon, 1 teaspoon rice malt syrup and 1 teaspoon of cacao for a delicious cinnamon hot chocolate.

Sprinkle cinnamon on sweet potato and roast in the oven. We love snacking on this as a dessert with a dollop of yoghurt. Yum!

Cinnamon is a popular addition to Moroccan tagine recipes. It goes well with both chicken and red meat recipes.
Make an anti-inflammatory coconut smoothie: Blend water and flesh of a young coconut with ½ teaspoon of ground turmeric, ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon and 2 teaspoons of rice malt syrup.

Original article here: https://iquitsugar.com/a-bluffers-guide-to-cinnamon/

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