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Turmeric,Curcuma longa, is a member of theZingiberaceaefamily or ginger family and is closely related to cardamom, ginger and grains of paradise. It is pronounced as either "too-mer-ick” or “tur-mer-ick.” Tumeric is the frequent misspelling of turmeric that you may have encountered. Turmeric is native to tropical South Asia and is a key spice in numerous Asian dishes.
Turmeric contains three key components: essential oil (1.5% to 6%), coloring compounds known as curcuminoids (3% to 8%) and starch. The essential oil is primarily turmerone (30%), duhydrotumerone (25%) and zingiberene (25%) and is very aromatic.
Turmeric is called Kurkum (Arabic), yu-chin (Mandarin), Curcuma or Safran des Indes (French), Indischer Safran or Gelbwurz (German), Haldi (Hindi), Ukon (Japanese), Açafrão da Índia or Curcuma (Portuguese), zholtyj imbir (Russian) and Cu’rcuma (Spanish). It may also be referred to as Indian saffron, curcumin turmeric or yellow ginger.