Nigella is known by several names: we think of the same spice as black cumin, black onion, kalonji, or charnushka.
Most nigella is grown in India and Syria.
When used as a spice, nigella is very similar to sesame seeds, as it is used in pastries as well as in the production of nigella oil.
Breads and scones are often sprinkled with it.
It is also a popular spice in Turkish, Oriental and Indian cuisine, a typical flavor of Egyptian pie bread, but is also added to vegetables, vegetable dishes, salads and meat dishes. When used in the kitchen, dry toasting enhances its flavors and aromas.
Nigella is also a component of the five spice blends in Bengal and harmonizes well in spice blends e.g. also with chili, garlic, ginger, coriander and turmeric.
Nigella oil is used widely, on the one hand for health reasons, as its beneficial effects on allergies and asthma are known, but it is also recommended for the skin in the cosmetics industry.
Interesting fact: according to our knowledge, Cleopatra also put oil from the seeds of nigella in her bath water, and Nofretiti applied it to her face.
Store in a cool, dry place, away from sunlight.