Native to South Asia, turmeric (Curcuma longa) is a member of the ginger family and has a bitter taste. It is said to have been used in India for over 2500 years, particularly in religious ceremonies and weddings, and is a primary ingredient in Indian, African, Persian and Thai cuisines. Turmeric is often used to give many prepared foods their yellow color, some of which include: broths, curry powder, salad dressing and yellow mustard. In vegan cooking, however, turmeric is most widely used in conjunction with tofu to create imitation egg dishes such as tofu scramble. Furthermore, the spice can be used in place of saffron as a cheaper substitute (source).
Having multiple uses, turmeric is useful as a fabric dye and in skin care, as well as for medicinal purposes, particularly in Chinese and Ayurvedic medicine. This spice is said to help reduce the effects of or prevent many ailments such as Alzheimer’s, arthritis, asthma, cancer, colds/flu, cuts/bruises and diabetes, and it is also said to assist with weight loss (source). Turmeric is a very good source of Dietary Fiber, Iron, Manganese, Potassium and Vitamin B6, and is a good source of Magnesium and Vitamin C (source).