Name: Cinnamomum burmannii
Origin: Indonesia, Vietnam
Aroma: Spicy, Earthy
Flavor: Spicy, Woody, Sweet
Our Products: Cut & Sift, Tea Cut, Powder, Sticks
Contact PGI for micro reduction, roasting, blending, milling, and social involvement with growers.
The use of the fragrant bark known as Cinnamon has been documented since 2,000 BC. Some of these early uses are attributed to the ancient Egyptians who used cinnamon in the embalming process not only for its spicy-sweet scent but also for its preservation proprieties. At first, this exotic bark was only available to the elite and Pliny the Elder, a Roman philosopher and naturalist, wrote about cinnamon as being 15x the value of silver. The price was driven up and controlled by those who possessed access to the farms in Ceylon, modern-day Sri Lanka. To justify the extreme costs, traders would tell lavish stories that told of the extreme lengths taken to harvest this spice. One such story, written about by a Greek historian, tells of giant mountain birds that made their nests where no man could reach and would carry cinnamon sticks up to their nests. In order to access these stockpiles of cinnamon, a person would leave large segments of ox meat for the bird and when it returned to its nest, the weight of the meat would knock the nests to the ground. These tales added to the allure of buying cinnamon for such exorbitant rates. Because this was a highly sought after and profitable spice, European countries began to seek ways to gain access to Ceylon in hopes to control the trade. Eventually, the Portuguese in 1518 found the kingdom of Kotto, an island of Ceylon, and gained control of the cinnamon trade through terrible means. After came the Dutch who took power from the Portuguese and then followed the British. By the 1800 cinnamon trees were being cultivated in multiple countries and the demand dropped as it became so widely available.
Cozy Spiced Milk
- 1.5 cups of Macadamia Milk
- 1 stick of Cinnamon (or 1 tsp of powder)
- 1 tsp local raw honey
Add milk and cinnamon to a small saucepan and simmer until small bubbles form around the edge of the pan, don’t allow the mixture to boil. Strain over your favorite mug, add honey and enjoy! If you use powder, whisk the mixture as its simmering or use a milk frother or immersion blender to fully incorporate the cinnamon into the milk.
Once cinnamon spread across the ancient world, many cultures adopted it for varied uses. In Roman culture, cinnamon was used to flavor wine, perfumes, and if you could afford it you would burn it with a funeral pyre. For Asian, Mexican, Arabic and North African cultures it was heavily prized as a culinary spice. Cinnamon was also used as medicine to aid in digestion, leveling blood sugar, as an anticoagulant, to ease menstrual pains, as a mild painkiller, and to prevent bacterial growths. It is also thought to have aesthetic qualities in Chinese culture, with the belief that cinnamon will lead to a younger and more youthful complexion.