What Is Ceylon Rolled Cinnamon And Why Is It Considered Premium?

Ceylon rolled cinnamon also known as ‘true cinnamon’ is highly esteemed for its unique characteristics, superior quality, and many health benefits. Unlike its counterpart, Cassia cinnamon, which is commonly found in grocery stores, Ceylon cinnamon has a lighter, sweeter flavour and a more refined texture. The reason it is referred to as a premium cinnamon is owing to its purity, processing methods, and the stringent standards under which it is cultivated and harvested.

What does it look like?

Ceylon cinnamon sticks are soft and layered, resembling a cigar with multiple thin, delicate layers rolled together. This contrasts with the hard, thick, and single-layered bark of Cassia cinnamon.

This form of rolled cinnamon offers a subtle, complex flavour profile with a sweet and mild taste. Its aroma is delicate and fragrant, lacking the intense spiciness of Cassia. It is lighter in colour, typically tan or light brown, compared to the reddish-brown hue of Cassia cinnamon. The texture is more crumbly and brittle, making it easier to grind into a fine powder.

What makes it a top-shelf variety?

Ceylon cinnamon is considered purer because it contains significantly lower levels of coumarin, a natural compound found in higher concentrations in Cassia cinnamon. High levels of coumarin can be harmful if consumed in large amounts over time.

The cultivation process of Ceylon cinnamon is meticulous. It is often grown in small-scale, sustainable farms where each tree is carefully tended to ensure the highest quality bark. The harvesting process is labour-intensive and involves skilled labour. The inner bark is hand-peeled and dried, a method that preserves the essential oils and ensures a delicate flavour profile.

Ceylon cinnamon is reputed for its health benefits, including anti-inflammatory properties, antioxidant activity, and the ability to aid in blood sugar regulation. These benefits are more pronounced due to the higher content of beneficial compounds and lower toxicity.

Ceylon cinnamon has been shown to improve insulin sensitivity and lower blood sugar levels, making it useful for diabetics. Regular consumption may help reduce cholesterol levels and lower blood pressure, contributing to overall cardiovascular health. It can aid in digestion by reducing gas and bloating and can also help alleviate symptoms of indigestion and nausea.

Do you know about its past?

Ceylon cinnamon has a rich history dating back to ancient times. It was highly prized by various civilizations, including the Egyptians, Romans, and Chinese. In ancient Egypt, it was used in embalming processes and as a flavouring agent, while the Romans used it in perfumes and incense. Its value was so high that it was often considered more precious than gold.

The spice trade in the 15th and 16th centuries played a crucial role in the spread of Ceylon cinnamon. European explorers, including the Portuguese and the Dutch, sought control over the cinnamon trade routes. Sri Lanka, being a prime source of true cinnamon, became a focal point of these colonial ambitions.

Best ways to use it

Ceylon cinnamon has a wonderful and mild sweetness which works wonders in baking; It is commonly used in pastries, cakes, and cookies, providing a subtle warmth. This cinnamon can also enhance the flavour of savoury dishes like curries, stews, and rice dishes, particularly in Middle Eastern and Indian cuisines.