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All About Cassia | Know Your Spice Jangli Dalchini (Cinnamomum cassia)

All About Cassia or Chinese Cinnamon | Know Your Spice Jangli Dalchini (Cinnamomum cassia).jpg

All About Cinnamon | Know Your Spice Dalchini (Cinnamomum verum)

All About Cassia | Know Your Spice Jangli Dalchini or Chinese Cinnamon (Cinnamomum cassia)

It is also known as Cassia Cinnamon, Chinese Cinnamon or Chinese Cassia

Cassia (Cinnamomum cassia) also known as Chinese Cinnamon or Jangli Dalchini are primarily harvested in in South China, Vietnam, Laos, and Myanmar. In India only a few plants are available.

Both cinnamon (Cinnamomum verum) and cassia (Cinnamomum cassia) are tree bark from the same family and genus of plant.

When ground, it is hard to distinguish between the two. But the difference is in the color and smell of each of the spices.

What are the other names of Cassia?

Chinese Cinnamon names in other languages are given below.
Indian Languages Other Languages
Hindi: Jangli Dalchini
Gujarati:
Tajj
Malayalam:
Ilavangum, Vayana
Sanskrit:
Sthulatvak
Tamil:
Ilavangapattai
Telugu:
Lavangapattai
Latin (Botanical): Cinnamomum cassia or Cinnamomum aromaticum
Spanish: Canela de la China
French: Cannelle de cochinchine
German: Kassie
Swedish: Kassia
Arabic: Darasini
Dutch: Kassia
Italian: Cassia
Chinese: Rou Gui

What exactly is Cassia?

Get to know more about Chinese Cinnamon

Spice card – all about cassia | know your spice jangli dalchini (cinnamomum cassia)

Cinnamomum Cassia or Chinese Cassia or Cinnamon (Cinnamomum cassia Blume) is the dried bark of Cassia which is a small, bushy, evergreen tree from the family Lauraceae.

The tree is 18-20 mtr high and 40-60 cm diameter with a straight and cylindrical trunk and grey brown bark, 13-15mm thick when mature.

Originating in South China, Chinese Cinnamon is now widely cultivated in tropical or subtropical areas of Fujian, Guangdong, Guangxi, Guizhou, Hainan, Taiwan, and Yunnan.

It is also cultivated in India, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Thailand, and Vietnam.

It is grown at altitudes up to 300 mtr MSL with a mean daily temperature of about 23 degree C and an annual rainfall of 1250 mm in about 135 wet days.

It is a light demanding tree, slightly shade tolerant when young, preferring cool and wet conditions.

Parts of the plant Chinese Cinnamon used are bark, buds, twigs & leaves.

What is the nutritional value of Cassia?

Find out about the nutritional value of Chinese Cinnamon (Cinnamomum cassia)

Chinese Cinnamon yields bark and leaf oils that are economically important. The bark of Chinese Cinnamon is coarser and thicker with a more intense aroma than the true cinnamon.

The bark contains high amounts of carbohydrates (47-55 g 100g -1 ), crude fiber (21-33 g 100g -1 ) and calcium (690-1157 mg 100g -1 ).

The oil of the barks contain high ratio of saturated fatty with Palmitic acid being the major fatty acid. The protein in the bark has good nutritional quality.

What is the chemical composition of Cassia?

Know and understand about chemical composition of Chinese Cinnamon (Cinnamomum cassia)

More than 160 chemicals have been separated and identified from Chinese Cinnamon. The main constituents of Chinese Cinnamon are terpenoids, phenylpropanoids, glycosides, etc.

Among these, terpenoids are the most abundant phytochemicals in Chinese Cinnamon.

Phenylpropanoids are the bioactive components, among which cinnamaldehyde is considered as the representative component of this plant.

These essential oils have a strong antibacterial, antiviral, antitumor and anti-inflammatory effect on our biological functions and physiological activities.

What is the history of Cassia?

Know more about the origins & the story behind Chinese Cassia (Cinnamomum cassia)

The original name for Chinese Cinnamon in at least some of the many Chinese dialects may have been kwei-shi.

In 216 BCE, the first emperor of the Qin dynasty, Qin Shihuangdi, renamed one of his most prized spots conquests for a cassia grove cultivated there, calling it Kweilin, or Guilin, the present capital of Guangxi Province.

The extra-local trade of Chinese Cinnamon dates back to antiquity, when it was carried along certain routes predating the appearance of other cinnamon species.

It is identifiable in herbals from the second and third century BCE, and it is likely that the cinnamon referred to in the Bible is Chinese Cinnamon and not true cinnamon.

From the Ptolemaic Kingdom onward, Ancient Egyptian recipes for kyphi, an aromatic used for burning, included cinnamon and Chinese Cinnamon.

The gifts of Hellenistic rulers to temples sometimes included cassia and cinnamon.

The first Greek reference to kasia is found in a poem by Sappho in the seventh century BC.

According to Herodotus, both cinnamon and Chinese Cinnamon grew in Arabia, together with incense, myrrh, and labdanum, and were guarded by winged serpents.

According to the Periplus of the Erythraean Sea, written in Greek around the middle of the first century CE, Chinese Cinnamon was being moved through Indian harbors and shipped past the Gulf of Aden to Somalia.

But these maritime traders did not necessarily know where the Chinese Cinnamon was harvested.

What are the uses of Cassia?

How is Cassia or Chinese Cassia used?
  • The dried bark is the source of the important spice cassia.
  • The immature fruits are a source of cassia buds and look like cloves.
  • An essential oil, called oil of cassia or oil of cinnamon, is obtained by steam distillation of the leaves and twigs; it is used as a flavoring agent.
  • The major component of the oil from cassia bark and leaf is cinnamaldehyde.
  • The plant is used medicinally as a carminative, has analgesic and antipyretic properties.
  • Apart from its use as spice, it is a well known medicine reinforcing “yang or the body fire”.
  • The bark is not only used for flavouring food and beverages but also in pharmaceutical preparations and perfumery.
  • The volatile oils from leaf and bark and the oleoresin from bark are used in soaps, perfumes, spice essences and beverages.
  • Cassia works as a conditioner on dark hair and adds a beautiful golden tone to Blonde hair.

What does Cassia taste like?

What is the the taste of Chinese Cinnamon or Chinese Cassia?

Chinese Cinnamon has a sweet, aromatic, and pungent flavour.


All about cinnamon | know your spice dalchini (cinnamomum verum)


What is the difference between cassia & cinnamon?

Is cassia and cinnamon same?
Cassia Cinnamon Ceylon Cinnamon
  • Also known as Chinese cinnamon.
  • When the bark is dried, it forms hard curled sticks that are quite dense.
  • It has a very high content of a chemical hydroxychalcone that gives the spice its distinctive flavor.
  • It is cheaper
  • Also known as True cinnamon or Real cinnamon.
  • When the bark is dried, it is softer and flakier.
  • Its flavor is much milder & delicate than Cassia cinnamon.
  • More expensive

Some people say that Chinese cinnamon is sub-par, while others find its bold flavors perfect for their culinary needs.

The bottom line is that for home cooking and baking, most people find the differences negligible.


What can I use Cassia for?

Learn how to use Chinese Cassia or Chinese Cinnamon in your food & beverages.
  • Chinese Cinnamon bark (both powdered and in whole, or “stick” form) is used as a flavouring agent, for candies, desserts, baked goods, and meat.
  • Use it for your curry recipes, where cinnamon is less suitable like Korma and Pasanda. It gives the very subtle sweetness that these dishes are known for.
  • It provides a spicy and warm flavour that goes perfectly with teas, coffee and spicy dishes.
  • To treat a cold and flu, diffuse 2–3 drops of Chinese Cinnamon oil or inhale the oil twice daily.
  • Add 1–2 drops of Chinese Cinnamon oil to a Baked Apple Cinnamon Oatmeal Recipe.
  • Chinese Cinnamon bark is used as a flavouring in cooking and particularly in liqueurs and chocolate.
  • Drop Chinese Cinnamon powder into simmering pots of cider and wine you plan to mull.
  • Use it to make your own Chinese Five Spice Powder or Garam Masala.
  • You can also include it in your bread, cookies, cakes & puddings.
  • Add some variety to the taste of the fruits that you eat every day with cassia cinnamon powder.
  • Add Chinese cinnamon to your smoothies for a sweet taste without the need for sugar.

How long does Cassia last?

Learn about how long does Chinese Cinnamon last in storage.

Whole Sticks last for 2-3 Years while ground or powdered form may last anywhere from 6-12 Months.

Cinnamon does degrade over time and degrades faster depending on the surface area – thus whole sticks last much longer than ground.

How do I store Cassia?

Learn about how to store Chinese Cinnamon or Jangli Dalchini.

Store it in a cool dark & dry area in your kitchen. You can even keep it in your refrigerator. Store it away from sources of heat and moisture.

Is there a substitute for Cassia?

Learn how to use a substitute for Chinese Cassia or Jangli Dalchini if unavailable
  • Use an infusion of powder, properly strained, to substitute for the stick form if it is impossible for you to obtain sticks. You will need a lot less of the powdered form to produce the same flavours.
  • Another possibility is to blend Nutmeg/Allspice powders.
  • Third possibility is to use mace.

Where do I buy Cassia from?

Where to Locate Cassia in the Grocery Store?

In India, Chinese Cinnamon bark or Powder is easily available in the spice aisles section of most superstores.

It is also available online via Amazon & other portals. The labels differentiate Pure Cinnamon from Chinese Cinnamon.

If you are overseas, it is better to buy whole bark quills from Asian groceries where they have a high turnover of spices, as the flavour does degrade once its been ground.

Did you know that most of the ground cinnamon sold in North America is actually Chinese Cinnamon?

What are the health benefits of Cassia?

Learn about health benefits of Cassia or Cinnamomum cassia

The following are health benefits of Cassia or Jangli Dalchini, Chinese Cassia or Chinese Cinnamon.

  • Health Benefits of Chinese Cassia as a Laxative – The pulp from the fruits, called cassia pulp, is a well-known laxative, and is used in the treatment of Constipation.
  • Health Benefits of Chinese Cassia for Common Cold – The root of the tree is useful in common cold. in case of running nose, smoke from the burning root can be inhaled. It encourages a copious nasal discharge and provides relief.
  • Health Benefits of Chinese Cinnamon against Fever – The root of the tree is a tonic and useful in reducing fever. An alcoholic extract of the root-bark is used for black water fever.
  • Health Benefits of Chinese Cassia against Skin Disorders – The leaves of the tree are useful in relieving irritation of the skin and in alleviating swellings and pains. Their juice or paste serves as a useful dressing for ringworm and inflammation of the hands or feet caused by exposure to cold.
  • Health Benefits of Chinese Cinnamon Against Diabetes – A study published in the Korean Nutrition Society in 2017 suggested that this cinnamon variety helped in postprandial glucose regulation.
  • Health Benefits of Chinese Cassia for Nutrition – It contains essential nutrients such as carbohydrates, iron, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium, calcium, and some traces of vitamin A, B, and K.
  • Health Benefits of Chinese Cinnamon for Boosting ImmunityInternal use of Cassia oil can help support healthy immune function, Cassia is a powerful commodity in protecting the body from seasonal threats.
  • Health Benefits of Chinese Cinnamon for Rejuvenation – When applied topically, Cassia oil has the ability to help soothe the body and its aroma can help to uplift the senses. This massage blend is especially beneficial during the winter months due to its warming properties and spicy scent.
  • Health Benefits of Chinese Cinnamon against Obesity – Combined with frequent exercise and healthy eating, this spice can be another option to aid in weight loss.

Note: Chinese Cinnamon contains a blood thinner called coumarin. Coumarin can damage your liver if you consume it in large amounts.


All About Cassia or Chinese Cinnamon | Know Your Spice Jangli Dalchini (Cinnamomum cassia).jpg
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Cassia: Make Cassia Powder at Home

Cassia: Make Cassia Powder at Home - Follow these steps to learn how to how to make Cassia cinnamon powder at home. Creating your cassia cinnamon powder needs from sticks will avoid all possibilities of adulteration.
Course Condiment
Cuisine World
Diet Diabetic, Gluten Free, Vegan, Vegetarian
Keyword Cassia, Cassia Cinnamon, Cassia Cinnamon Powder, Cassia Powder, Chinese Cassia, Chinese Cassia Powder, Make Cassia Cinnamon Powder, Make Cassia Powder
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 5 minutes
Servings 10 Servings
Calories 6.42kcal
Author Sumit Malhotra

Ingredients

  • 1 Cup Cassia Cinnamon Chinese Cinnamon
  • 1 Tablespoon Brown Sugar

Instructions

  • Wash the Chinese Cinnamon sticks and break into small pieces.
  • Roast the pieces of Chinese Cinnamon on low flame for 2 minutes till fragrant.
  • Gather the roasted pieces of Chinese Cinnamon and grind it into a fine powder using a spice grinder.
  • Sieve to separate the fine powder from the remnants and repeat the process without sugar till done.
  • Store in an airtight container.

Notes

  • Ensure that you make a limited quantity that you'll use in a short span of time, the powder loses its potency faster than the quills.
  • Adding brown sugar will allow you to make a smoother powder.

Tools & Equipment Used For This Recipe

The links below the image lead to product links on Amazon.in & Amazon.com respectively

Spice Grinder

Spatula

Strainer

FInally! To Sum It Up

All About Cassia (Cinnamomum cassia) | Benefits of Cassia

Cinnamomum Cassia or Chinese Cinnamon is the dried bark of the tree which is a small, bushy, evergreen plant from the family Lauraceae.

The tree is 18-20 mtr high and 40-60 cm diameter with a straight and cylindrical trunk and grey brown bark, 13-15mm thick when mature.

Originating in South China, Chinese Cinnamon is now widely cultivated in tropical or subtropical areas of Fujian, Guangdong, Guangxi, Guizhou, Hainan, Taiwan, and Yunnan.

It is also cultivated in India, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Thailand, and Vietnam.

It is grown at altitudes up to 300 mtr MSL with a mean daily temperature of about 23 degree C and an annual rainfall of 1250 mm in about 135 wet days.

It is a light demanding tree, slightly shade tolerant when young, preferring cool and wet conditions.

Parts of the plant Chinese Cinnamon used are bark, buds, twigs & leaves.

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