Smell: Sumac is primarily cultivated in the Middle East as a deep red berry--the word sumac itself being derived from the Aramaic language word for “deep red”. Used primarily in its crushed form, Sumac berries can be slightly pressed, then infused into oils for a sour yet rich condiment. Note its rich and leathery--almost moist--texture alongside its deep color evident in the purest of Sumac.
Flavors: A distinctly citrus quality is the dominant flavor of Sumac, yet it also possesses a sightly sweet, tannic quality reminiscent of leather, tobacco and dried fruit.
Use: Sprinkle Sumac on grilled meats and other rich foods, as well as Middle Eastern and rice dishes. For an interesting change, season popcorn with olive oil, salt and Sumac.
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