We need to talk… (and my super easy paella recipe!)

…about Turmeric!

Because this stuff is sensational.

Photo credit: Jackson3 on Flickr

Photo credit: Jackson3 on Flickr

Have you heard of it? I didn’t really know what it was until recently, except for recognising the distinct yellow colour and that it had something to do with curries. Interesting fact – it is also the magic ingredient that gives american mustard its bright yellow colour!

Turmeric comes from the root of the Curcuma longa plant, that grows in the forests of South and Southeast Asia. It has a tough brown skin and a deep orange flesh.


A natural anti-inflammatory and powerful antioxidant that has been found to help detox the liver in particular, research shows us what many asian countries have known for thousands of years – that turmeric is not just delicious, it could potentially protect us from dementia and even prevent the dreaded C.


Turmeric has an active ingredient called curcumin. In lab tests, curcumin was found to block the growth of certain types of tumours! One study even showed that turmeric extract containing curcumin stabilized colorectal cancer without any other treatment! I must add further research needs to be done, but the initial results are promising – and what do we have to lose?

How to eat it

You can buy oral capsules, or it can be added to curries and other dishes in its powder form. I made a simple paella this week when we had a friend over for dinner that I thought I’d share (and the reason why I had turmeric on my mind!).

Super easy Paella recipe

The finished result.

The finished result.


  • 500g chicken
  • 1 chorizo sausage
  • 2 cups basmati rice
  • 200g cooked prawns (I didn’t use these this time – so they are optional)
  • 1 teaspoon turmeric
  • Bunch of coriander finely chopped
  • 2.5 cups chicken stock
  • Capsicum (or red pepper as i should call it, silly Aussies…)
  • 1 can chopped tomatoes
  • 1 can cannellini beans
  • 1 onion
  • 1 small chilli – seeds removed
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 200g green beans
  • Lemon wedges to serve


  1. Pan fry the chicken breast until cooked and set aside.
  2. Add a splash of olive oil to the pan, then cook the chorizo, garlic and onion for a few minutes, until the chorizo begins to crisp.
  3. Add the turmeric, chilli, capsicum and the rice – cook for two minutes.
  4. Add the stock and chopped tomatoes, mix and then simmer for around 15-20 minutes until the rice is cooked.
  5. Add the chicken, cannellini beans, green beans and prawns if you’re using them, cook for 2-3 minutes.
  6. Add the chopped coriander, stir.
  7. Serve immediately with lemon wedges. Enjoy!

How do you use Turmeric in your cooking? Let me know in the comments!

Coco xo

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