Nigella sativa is a flowering plant native to southwest Asia, and its use in recipes stems from its medicinal uses. Nigella sativa, more commonly referred to as black cumin, is used in seed form to treat infections, increase milk production, and promote digestion. Other uses include reducing asthma symptoms and even sometimes helping to treat cancer. With so many benefits, it is no wonder black cumin is making its way into a lot of foods. Because of their versatility, you can use Nigella sativa seeds in almost any recipe. Read on for a few examples of how to cook with Nigella sativa.
Great for digestion, this black bean soup utilizes black beans and black cumin to create a powerful diuretic. If you are looking to cleanse your body or reduce fluid retention, this soup is for you. To make a Nigella-sativa black bean soup, sauté your black cumin seeds in extra virgin olive oil until they turn golden brown. Less is more in this process, as you want to be sure to not burn the seeds. Add chopped garlic and onions and sauté these as well. Once the onions have changed color, add black beans and a lot of water. Add chili pepper as desired, and then cook until the beans become tender.
Once the beans are soft, you can stir them and add tumeric powder and ginger. As the beans become totally tender, the liquid will begin to thicken. You can add more spices as you desire.
For a delicious treat, try this berry smoothie. All you need is one teaspoon of Nigella sativa berries, 1/2 cup of lycium berries, and a little lemon juice. Simply grind up the black cumin seeds and soak them in water overnight. Then blend the lycium berries until they are totally chopped up. Add the Nigella sativa seeds and the water in which they were soaking. This water will be infused with the seeds' juices. Add a little lemon juice and enjoy. If you prefer, you can freeze the concoction or add chopped ice for a true smoothie.
For a unique Nigella sativa recipe, try this honey mixture. You can add the honey to any treat to instantly spruce it up. All you need is three cups of honey, two tablespoons of royal honey, two large tablespoons of Nigella sativa seeds and oil, two large tablespoons of ginger powder, and 1/3 cup of chopped nuts. Any nuts you use are fine, but almonds and pistachios seem to work best.
To make the honey mixture, add the honey, seeds and ginger to a medium-sized mixing bowl. If you cannot get your hands on black cumin seeds, you can use pure black cumin oil. Some people actually prefer the oil because of its consistency. If you use seeds, be sure to heat them before using.
Mix the honey mixture, then add the nuts. Place the honey in sealed jars. The power honey mixture can be used on food, but some prefer to simply take one teaspoon a day as a supplement.