I still have a large square of that curtain remnant folded up in a cupboard. It's function has changed from magic carpet to picnic blanket to hold-all to dust-cloth; one of very few possessions that has accompanied me through the journey of my life. When I see that dust-cloth or just the colour of it, I'm taken back to a time when I was joyously enthusiastic, before I understood what being politically-correct meant, when I wasn't ashamed to skip down the street wearing nothing but my saffron-coloured tunic.
Saffron is the colour of relief as I finally press my Blogger Publish Post button, the colour of the robes of a peaceful Buddhist monk and it speckles my favourite rice dishes. The spice made from dried crocus stigmas has a concentrated, dark red colour. To unleash its vibrant yellowy-orange pigment, saffron strands can be soaked in warm water or milk. This liquid, poured into the rice pot as a natural food-colouring agent, turns a mundane staple into a sunshine-yellow celebration. Only a few strands are required as it's bitter and expensive.
|Crocuses in a pot last spring|
|Crocuses in the lawn last spring|
|Crocus bulbs dug up by a fox or cat this winter|
One bulb flowered in the lawn, but it was soon hidden by a thick layer of snow, as reported last week. I didn't fancy its chances of surviving as usually the slightest frost can wilt crocuses and turn them limp & soggy.
However, last Saturday the snow started to melt, revealing that the crocus had been perfectly preserved, and there were more signs of crocus leaves poking out all around. The fantasy of a magic carpet lives on ...
|crocus in the lawn on Saturday|
|... and on Monday|
Interesting information about saffron :
My favourite rice dish made with saffron :
Please consider Stacy's invitation in : Thirteen or fewer ways of looking at a Crocus