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Nigella is a spice from Egypt. Cultivated in the Nile delta, it produces triangular black seeds that will revolutionize your dishes by their power and their slightly lemony taste
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It isin Egypt, in the delta of the Nile, that the nigella that I propose to you today isproduced. The seed of nigella is used as a seasoning and adds complexity to your cooking. Very appreciated, as much for its taste as for its virtues, it is not known by all, it is the moment for me to present it to you. The nigella is a herbaceous plant cultivated since antiquity. If it is found today in Egyptian plantations, this plant is native to Asia. Cultivated as an ornamental species, nigella produces seeds that find their perfect place in your kitchen among other spices. Nigella is mentioned in the capitulary of Villis, the famous legislative act containing a list of plants that Charlemagne wanted to be cultivated on royal estates. Quoted in the Bible, nigella was then promoted by the prophet of Islam to the 7th rank of plant capable of healing all diseases. There are different kinds of nigella, namely nigella sativa, nigella damascena or nigella arvensis. Do not confuse them, the second mentioned is a poisonous flower. The nigella seed I am offering you, which is also called black cumin, comes from the nigella sativa. Today, it is mainly in the Arabic cuisine that we find the nigella seed. However, it tends to be democratized in the West and is increasingly consumed by lovers of spices and herbs.
Black cumin seed is a very special spice. Its flavour is quite strong, pungent, which requires a rather precise dosage in your kitchen. It has peppery, fruity and lemony notes that make all the difference in a dish.
Nigella is a very pretty plant with blue (or even pink or white) flowers. After flowering, they give way to capsules which contain the famous nigella seeds. Harvesting is in itself quite simple, just cut the stems on which the capsules are located. Then, it is necessary to dry them, not too quickly however, it is better to avoid full sun. On the other hand, the nigella seeds must dry in the open air and benefit from a humid environment, they will ideally be installed under an open shed. Each capsule contains many small seeds in a triangular shape. As they mature, they become black in colour.
The nigella seed is widely used in Arabic cuisine, although it can also find its place in our western kitchens. Its strong and fragrant taste brings a real plus to your dishes, whether you use it in the form of seeds or use a mill to obtain a nigella powder. I have chosen to sell you the nigella seeds so that you are free to choose how you incorporate it into your cooking. Good to know: you can roast your seeds before grinding them in order to increase their flavour tenfold and make grinding easier. To do this, simply place them in a frying pan over high heat for a few minutes, taking care to stir them constantly. This will avoid an unpleasant burnt taste that would spoil all the effectiveness of your nigella in your preparations. Be sure to dose your nigella well because of its strong taste
Ideal for a fresh starter or as an aperitif, tzatziki is a preparation made from cucumber and Greek yoghurt. To these two basic ingredients, add garlic, onion, lemon juice and salt. The nigella seed or powder will bring this little pep that makes all the difference.
Feel like a change from the traditional flavours and away from Sunday lunchtime roast chicken? Offer your guests a chicken nigella. Cook chicken thighs in a pot with onion, saffron, cinnamon and ginger to blend the flavours and take a real taste journey. Add black cumin seeds for a very tasty dish, no need to add pepper.
The lemon goes perfectly with the nigella. Be daring and prepare a cake with a lemon cream on which you will sprinkle nigella seeds. It's surprising and good at the same time, your guests will love it.
The nigella, beyond its gustatory qualities, is a plant with multiple properties. In internal or external use, it has many virtues. It is composed of thymoquinone, which is one of the active ingredients of nigella. Many studies carried out since the 1960s attest to the effectiveness of thymoquinone as ananti-inflammatory, antiviral, antibacterial, antihistamine, etc.. The seeds can be consumed in cooking, but also as an infusion. One also finds nigella oil which seduces by its virtues. Black cumin strengthens the immune system and is a detoxifying plant. It is a natural antibiotic. In addition, nigella acts effectively to relieve various digestion problems (diarrhea, bloating, stomach cramps, etc.). In external use, this plant in seeds allows to treat various skin problems, such as eczema, mycosis and sunburn. It also combats hair loss. In the form of oil, it treats headaches, simply apply it to the temples.
Nigella seed, like many spices and condiments, should preferably be stored in a dry place away from light and moisture.
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